What is the role of parathyroid hormone (PTH) in the treatment of hypercalciuria?

Updated: Apr 23, 2019
  • Author: Stephen W Leslie, MD, FACS; Chief Editor: Vecihi Batuman, MD, FASN  more...
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Answer

PTH or its amino-terminal fragment has been shown stimulate bone formation and resorption without causing hypercalcemia. Once-daily injections of PTH tend to maximize the osteoblastic activity while minimizing bone resorption for a net gain in bone mass. This treatment was tested in a large, multicenter trial of 9347 postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. All of the patients received vitamin D and calcium supplementation. [51]

The group that received the PTH injections had reductions in fracture rates of 65-86%. [51] Urinary calcium excretion was increased only slightly (roughly by 30 mg of calcium per day in the treated group), but the overall incidence of hypercalciuria was no different between the PTH-treated group and the patients who received placebo. This most likely was due to the single daily dosing of the PTH, which minimized the hypercalcemic and hypercalciuric responses. [51]

In short, this is a promising avenue of research for osteoporosis and osteopenia that appears to have no significant effect on hypercalciuria or calcium stone formation. Further research on this and other osteoblast-enhancing therapies holds promise in treating osteoporosis and, possibly, select cases of hypercalciuria.


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