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Indications for parathyroidectomy in end-stage renal disease

Michael Berkoben, MD
L Darryl Quarles, MD
Section Editor
Steve J Schwab, MD
Deputy Editor
Alice M Sheridan, MD


Approximately 10 percent of patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) undergo parathyroidectomy for secondary hyperparathyroidism [1]. This percentage has remained constant over the past 20 years despite advances in medical therapy [2].

This topic reviews the pathogenesis of refractory hyperparathyroidism and the indications for parathyroidectomy among patients with ESRD. The medical management of hyperparathyroidism is discussed elsewhere. (See "Management of secondary hyperparathyroidism in adult nondialysis patients with chronic kidney disease" and "Management of secondary hyperparathyroidism in dialysis patients".)

Anatomy of the parathyroid and surgical approaches to parathyroidectomy are discussed elsewhere. (See "Parathyroidectomy in end stage renal disease".)


A subset of patients with ESRD have marked elevations in serum parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels despite medical therapy. (See "Management of secondary hyperparathyroidism in adult nondialysis patients with chronic kidney disease" and "Management of secondary hyperparathyroidism in dialysis patients".)

Several interrelated factors are thought to be involved in the pathogenesis of refractory hyperparathyroidism.

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Apr 08, 2015.
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