Hyperparathyroidism (HPT) cannot be cured naturally. This is because HPT can be attributed to a set of genetic mutations that results in the abnormal parathyroid gland thinking that a higher calcium level is appropriate for the body (almost like changing the thermostat on your air conditioning). There are multiple genetic changes that have to happen in the same cell in order for it to make this mistake. Once these multiple changes (mutations) occur, not only the cell mistakenly aims for a higher calcium level, it starts to duplicate itself and get bigger (also controlled by the mutations). Unfortunately there is no natural mechanism or remedy to reverse the mutations. It can be prevented by having or made less likely to occur by having a healthy lifestyle and less exposure to toxins. In other words, natural methods may be used to help limit the risk of HPT and/or reduce the severity of HPT symptoms. It can also be used to slow down the impact of the disease such as impact on the bones. If HPT patients find their symptoms worsen, they may require parathyroidectomy surgery, regardless of whether natural methods were previously used to help alleviate their symptoms.
Can Hyperparathyroidism Be Prevented Naturally?
HPT cannot always be prevented since the condition can be linked to a genetic defect. That said, people can do several things to lower their risk of experiencing HPT symptoms, such as:
1. Stay Hydrated
Dehydration is a complication associated with primary HPT. Also, intravenous hydration is a common treatment used to help patients diagnosed with acute HPT symptoms. With proper hydration, HPT patients may be better equipped than ever before to minimize their symptoms. In a sense you are diluting out the excess calcium in the blood and urine. Which means, by drinking a sufficient amount of water daily, people may lower their risk of kidney stones, which can indicate a parathyroid disorder is present.
2. Exercise Regularly
A low level of physical activity can increase the risk of HPT symptoms. Therefore, developing and following an exercise regimen may help people reduce their risk of HPT. Of course, HPT patients can engage in regular exercise to help strengthen the bones by putting pressure on them. Before initiating an exercise plan, consult with a doctor.
3. Avoid Smoking
Nicotine in cigarettes and other tobacco products may stimulate the release of parathyroid hormone (PTH), which can contribute to HPT symptoms. Thus, those who want to minimize their risk of HPT should avoid smoking. HPT patients should also avoid smoking, since nicotine consumption can contribute to bone loss and other long-term health problems.
How to Manage Hyperparathyroidism Naturally
HPT caused by a genetic disorder must be diagnosed in its early stages. This ensures that a patient can receive the necessary guidance and support to minimize the impact of HPT symptoms.
To diagnose HPT, a doctor performs blood tests to assess the amount of calcium in a patient’s blood. Although an elevated calcium level may be linked to a variety of medical conditions, the doctor may diagnose a patient with HPT if their calcium and PTH levels are higher than normal.
Following blood tests that indicate a patient may be dealing with HPT, additional evaluations may be required to verify the diagnosis. These assessments include:
- Bone Mineral Density Test: Involves the use of X-rays to evaluate the amount of calcium and other materials packed into a segment of a patient’s bone.
- Urine Test: Requires the collection of a patient’s urine for 24 hours; after this collection, a doctor can gain insights into how well a patient’s kidneys work and the amount of calcium in the patient’s urine.
- Imaging Tests: Help a doctor determine if a patient is dealing with kidney stones or other kidney abnormalities.
A doctor may determine a patient is dealing with HPT after the aforementioned tests. Yet, the doctor may also believe that the patient’s HPT symptoms may disappear without surgery. In this instance, the doctor may recommend a wait-and-see approach, which involves monitoring a patient’s blood calcium and vitamin D levels over a set period of time.
Research indicates that the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of calcium generally ranges from 1,000 mg. to 1,2000 mg per day for men and women. Comparatively, the RDA of vitamin D for men and women varies from 600 international units (IU) to 800 IU per day. For HPT patients, they may want to track the foods they eat to ensure their calcium and vitamin D levels stay
within normal levels.
If the calcium or vitamin D in an HPT patient’s blood falls below a normal level, supplementation may be required. At this point, a doctor recommends a calcium or vitamin D supplement or increased consumption of certain calcium- or vitamin D-rich foods, and the patient integrates the supplement or foods into their diet. Over time, the patient’s calcium and vitamin D levels are regularly monitored to verify that their supplementation efforts are delivering the intended results. Comparatively, if supplementation does not help a patient maintain a sufficient amount of calcium or vitamin D in the blood, surgery may be necessary, and a patient can undergo a parathyroidectomy to remove one or more defective parathyroid glands.
What to Expect During Parathyroid Gland Surgery
Leading up to parathyroid surgery, an HPT patient receives a custom treatment plan. The parathyroid gland surgeon discusses this plan with their patient, as well as responds to any treatment concerns or questions.
During parathyroid gland surgery, a small incision is made into a patient’s neck. The surgeon then carefully removes any defective parathyroid glands.
Parathyroidectomy surgery can usually be completed in about 20 minutes. When performed by an expert parathyroid gland surgeon, the risks of complications and scarring are minimal as well.
Explore Treatment Options for HPT Symptoms
At the CENTER for Advanced Parathyroid Surgery in Los Angeles, Dr. Babak Larian can help patients quickly and effectively mitigate their HPT symptoms. Dr. Larian is a leading parathyroid gland surgeon, and he understands the challenges associated with diagnosing and treating HPT. To overcome these issues, Dr. Larian performs comprehensive testing to understand his patients and their HPT symptoms. He also performs a minimally invasive parathyroidectomy (MIP) procedure that is designed to deliver long-lasting results.
Dr. Larian is available to evaluate patients and their HPT symptoms and determine if an MIP may be beneficial. To learn more or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Larian, please contact us online or call us today at 310-461-0300.