Anatomical heterogeneity of parathyroid glands in posttransplant hyperparathyroidism

David A. McCarron, Barbara Lenfesty, Nagraj Narasimhan, John M. Barry, R. Mark Vetto, William M. Bennett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Successful renal transplantation may be complicated by persistent hyperparathyroidism due to diffuse parathyroid hyperplasia remaining from a prolonged period of pretransplant chronic renal failure treatment. Posttransplant hyperparathyroidism is distinct from primary hyperparathyroidism, being characterized by multiple gland involvement and diffuse hyperplasia rather than a single adenoma. The gross pathologic anatomy of the parathyroid glands was assessed in 17 successful renal transplant recipients. Individual and total gland volumes were measured at the time of total parathyroidectomy and forearm reimplantation. Parathyroid hyperplasia was heterogenous in both location and gland size. Right-sided glands were enlarged more than left-sided ones. Subjects with primary tubulointerstitial disease exhibited greater hyperplasia than patients with glomerular disorders. Clinicians should be aware of the heterogeneity of the gland enlargement in patients with diffuse parathyroid hyperplasia, so that these patients are not misdiagnosed as suffering from adenomatous parathyroid disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)388-391
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Nephrology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1988


  • Calcium
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Parathyroid gland
  • Parathyroid hyperplasia
  • Transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology


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