What is the role of serum calcium assessment in the diagnosis of bipolar affective disorder (manic-depressive illness)?

Updated: May 06, 2018
  • Author: Stephen Soreff, MD; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Answer

Serum calcium is assessed to diagnose hypercalcemia and hypocalcemia associated with mental status changes (eg, hyperparathyroidism). An elevated calcium blood level can cause depression or mania. Hyperparathyroidism, as evidenced by an elevated calcium blood level, produces depression. Certain antidepressants, such as nortriptyline, affect the heart; therefore, checking calcium levels is important.


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