How is hyperparathyroidism diagnosed?

Because the symptoms of hyperparathyroidism can be nonexistent, mild or common to many other disorders, a diagnosis of hyperparathyroidism can be missed. Often, the condition is discovered through a blood test that is ordered for another condition.

If you have primary hyperparathyroidism, your blood test will show a higher-than-normal levels of calcium and parathyroid hormone. Your provider may order a sestamibi scan to check for any growths on your parathyroid glands or enlargement of the gland(s).

Other tests may be ordered to check for complications of hyperparathyroidism. These tests may include:

  • A blood test to check your vitamin D level. It’s common to have a low vitamin D level if you have hyperparathyroidism.
  • A bone density test to check for bone loss.
  • An ultrasound or other imaging test of your kidneys to check for kidney stones.
  • A 24-hour urine collection test to measure the amount of calcium and other chemicals in your urine to help determine the cause of your hyperparathyroidism.
  • Blood tests to check how well your kidneys are working.

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