What is the physiology of normal plasma calcium regulation?

Updated: Apr 11, 2018
  • Author: Thomas E Green, DO, MPH, MMM, CPE, FACEP, FACOEP; Chief Editor: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP  more...
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Answer

Plasma calcium is maintained within the reference range by a complex interplay of 3 major hormones, parathyroid hormone (PTH), 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (ie, calcitriol), and calcitonin. These 3 hormones act primarily at bone, kidney, and small intestine sites to maintain appropriate calcium levels.

Calcium enters the body through the small intestine and eventually is excreted via the kidney. Bone can act as a storage depot. This entire system is controlled through a feedback loop; individual hormones respond as needed to increase or decrease the serum calcium concentration.


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