Thyroid problems linked to bone fracture, heart attack, stroke

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In a recent study from the University of Gothenburg, scientists found in the hormonal disorder primary hyperparathyroidism, patients’ risk of hip fracture is elevated by 51%, and that of heart attack or stroke 45%.

They also found that surgery is linked to reduced risks of these outcomes.

Primary hyperparathyroidism is a common hormone disorder, especially among the elderly. It occurs more often in women, and some 3% of older women are affected.

Rather than causing specific symptoms, it is often detected by chance in connection with blood tests, which then show elevated calcium levels and normal or elevated parathyroid hormone levels.

This disturbed calcium balance in the blood can cause kidney, skeletal, and cardiovascular damage.

Previous studies have linked primary hyperparathyroidism to osteoporosis and heart disease. However, since these studies have been few and small, the association has been debated.

In the study, the team examined data from the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare.

All the 16,374 patients included were diagnosed with primary hyperparathyroidism sometime between 2006 and 2017.

Each was compared with ten control individuals from the population born in the same year, of the same sex, and residing in the same county.

The team found that untreated primary hyperparathyroidism means a 51% higher risk of hip fracture and a 45% increase in a heart attack or stroke risk.

The kidney stone risk is almost quadrupled and, additionally, the risk of death is raised by 72%.

The increased likelihood of these complications highlights the importance of identifying patients with this hormonal disease.

The team says an operation to remove the parathyroid glands (parathyroidectomy), entirely or partially, is the only definitive treatment for primary hyperparathyroidism.

Patients who meet special criteria may undergo surgery. Careful monitoring is recommended for those who do not.

The team found that the elevated risks of hip fracture, heart attack, and stroke decreased a lot for patients who underwent surgery.

If you care about bone health, please read studies that vegetarian women have higher risk of hip fracture, and many older people with hip fractures have vitamin K deficiency.

For more information about wellness, please see recent studies about vitamins that could help reduce bone fracture risk, and 8 days after giving birth, 29-year-old had a stroke.

The research was published in the journal JAMA Network Open and conducted by Kristian Axelsson et al.

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