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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What does high calcium level indicate?

Answered by
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Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai

Endocrinologist

Practicing since :2003

Answered : 1416 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 25 Sep 2014 in Thyroid Problem and Hormonal Problems
Question: I have had three comprehensive metabolic panels performed with calcium serum levels at 10.1, 10.3 & 10.3 again. A year and a half ago my level was 9.7. Are these new levels concerning at all? Any chance they are from a cancer? I feel generally fine. If they are fine, can I just retest in a year?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Hello

Detailed Answer:
Good day,
Noted your concern.
The calcium levels are on the higher side on two occasions. We need some more information before I can comment further.
Are you on calcium and Vitamin D tablets?
DO you have kidney stones or bone pains?
Any family history of parathyroid illness?
Any family history of finding high calcium?
The rise in calcium can occur due to a number of reasons and at your age, cancer is of least concern.
It is better to do following tests

1. Serum calcium, Serum Albumin, Serum Phosphrus
2. Serum PTH
3. Alkaline phosphatase
4. 24 hour urine calcium and creatinine
5. Vitamin D level

This is important to differentiate between various causes of high calcium

Regards
Binu



Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 2 minutes later
The answer to all of your above questions is no. No pain, history of disease or high calcium, etc. does this definitely deserves follow up or is this something I can do next year given that it is almost in the normal range? And how likely is cancer here? What percentage chance would these levels be due to cancer in me?

Dr let me also say that these tests were performed within the same exact week. Maybe this is why the levels are so close?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Cancer risk low or Nil

Detailed Answer:
Apologies for the delay in reply.
It is better to do a baseline tests which I mentioned above. With calcium levels alone it is difficult to pinpoint the diagnosis.

The 2 main diagnosis I am considering in you are,

a) Familial Hypocalciuric hyercalcemia ( FHH)
b) Primary hyperparathyroidism.

Following tests are required to differentiate these.

1. Serum calcium, Serum Albumin, Serum Phosphrus, serum creatinine
2. Serum PTH
3. Alkaline phosphatase
4. 24 hour urine calcium and creatinine
5. Vitamin D level

The possibility of cancer is extremely low or NIL. The levels of calcium will not change just because you got them checked in one week itself. If the above mentioned tests are normal, we ( endocrinologist) and you can relax and just follow up the calcium next year.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 31 minutes later
Thanks Dr.

My serum glucose was 92, serum creatinine 1.12, serum albumin 5.4, alkaline phosphatese 47, serum protein 7.9. Basically, everything that serum falls into the normal range. My BUN was however 24 (20 upper range) , and BUN/creatinine ratio was 21 (19 upper range).... I believe this indicates dehydration, correct? Could this be the cause of the elevated serum calcium?

I appreciate your wisdom very much. Tell me this also- is this almost 100% not a life threatening condition? And as a short tag along, are the odds pretty good this calcium level could just drop back into the range of "normal" on its own? Thank you again.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Your corrected calcium level is very much normal

Detailed Answer:
Oh okay.
Your albumin is 5.4, then the corrected calcium level will be lower. So if your serum calcium was 10.3 and albumin was 5.4, then the corrected calcium would be 9.18. This is very much normal. We have to correct the calcium based on the albumin level. Not to worry. Relax,


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 6 minutes later
This is precisely why a trained professional such as you should be interpreting my blood results instead of myself! Okay, so, just to confirm before I leave- given that my calcium serum is 10.3 and my albumin is 5.4, my corrected calcium falls well within the limits of normal at 9.1. Does this require any follow up or am I good to just proceed with annual physical given that other lab values are acceptable? I will rate you highly!!
doctor
Answered by Dr. Binu Parameswaran Pillai 6 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Relax. Repeat creatinine and BUN

Detailed Answer:
Hi, if the given values are correct ( albumin 5.4 and calcium 10.3) then your corrected calcium level is quite normal. Not to worry. You may proceed with annual tests. However, please repeat the creatinine and BUN at some point of time.
Wish you good health.

Regards
Binu
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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