Cancer from A to Z

Types of cancer, how to prevent them, diagnosis and treatment.


Parathyroid Disease

Parathyroid glands are pea-sized glands located near each corner of the thyroid gland in the neck. Parathyroid glands produce a substance called parathyroid hormone (PTH), which controls the levels of calcium and phosphorous in the blood. PTH also helps the body make vitamin D and helps prevent loss of too much calcium in the urine.

Most people have four parathyroid glands, but some people may be missing a gland or have an extra gland. Sometimes parathyroid glands are located inside the thyroid gland, thymus gland, mediastinum or other places. These misplaced glands can still work normally.



In addition to parathyroid cancer, MD Anderson also treats related parathyroid diseases: 

  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Hypoparathyroidism

Cancer of the parathyroid glands is extremely rare, with most cases occurring in people with hyperparathyroidism (HPT). Less than 1% of all patients with HPT have cancer in one of their parathyroid glands. Men and women are equally affected by this disease, which usually strikes people in their 50s.


Symptoms of parathyroid cancer may include:

  • A lump in the neck
  • Difficulty speaking or swallowing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Sudden spike in blood calcium levels (hypercalcemia)

At this moment there are no events of Parathyroid Disease


At the moment there are no courses of Parathyroid Disease

Clinical trials
Ensayo de fase 1a/2a, abierto y multicéntrico, para investigar la seguridad, tolerabilidad y actividad antitumoral de dosis repetidas de Sym015, una mezcla de anticuerpos monoclonales dirigida frente al receptor MET, en pacientes con tumores malignos sólidos en fase avanzada
Estudio fase IIIB, prospectivo, randomizado, abierto que evalúa la eficacia y seguridad de Heparina/Edoxaban versus Dalteparina en tromboembolismo venoso asociado con cáncer.
Tumores sólidos. Antiemesis Estudio fase III, multicéntrico, aleatorizado, doble ciego, con control activo para evaluar la seguridad y eficacia de Rolapitant en la prevención de náuseas y vómitos por la quimioterapia (NVIQ) en pacientes que reciben quimioterapia altamente emética (QAE). A phase III, multicenter, randomized, double blind, placebo controlled study of the safety and efficacy of Rolapitant for the treatment of Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting in subjects receiving highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy (HEC)
Ensayo clínico en fase I de determinación de dosis del antiangiogénico multidiana Dovitinib (TKI258) más paclitaxel en pacientes con tumores sólidos.

Diagnosing parathyroid cancer can be difficult. Biopsies generally aren't performed because the procedure can cause the tumor to break apart and spread. Hypercalcemia and a noticeable mass in the neck are the best indicators of parathyroid cancer. Ultrasound of the neck can also help find localized disease.

The primary treatment for parathyroid cancer is surgical removal of the malignant gland and a portion of the adjacent thyroid gland. Radiation therapy may be used after surgery, especially for patients at high risk for local recurrence because of remaining microscopic disease or failure to contain the tumor during surgery. Recurrent disease is also treated with surgery, and some patients may benefit from surgical treatment of parathyroid cancers that have metastasized to the lungs.


Although parathyroid cancer progresses slowly, it can be very persistent. The cancer recurs (returns) at the original disease site in 36% to 80% of patients, anywhere from one month to 19 years after initial treatment (average 2.6 years). Controlling hypercalcemia can help many patients experience longer disease-free periods between recurrences.