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How is hypercalcemia treated?
The treatment of elevated levels of calcium in the blood involves the evaluation of the following:
Is the level of calcium elevated enough to be dangerous, or is it causing symptoms?
What is the underlying cause of the hypercalcemia, and does it need treatment?
If the hypercalcemia is causing severe symptoms, or if the values are critically high, lowering the blood levels may require hospitalization and the use of hydration, steroids, or
even dialysis. There are intravenous medications that can be used to lower calcium as well.
If the hypercalcemia is modest, treatment with medications can be administered on an outpatient basis.
If the underlying cause is hyperparathyroidism (particularly from an adenoma), there are certain criteria that are reviewed to discuss if surgery should be considered. These criteria include the absolute calcium level, a history of kidney stones or other calcium-related complications, and the amount of calcium seen in a 24-hour urine collection. Based on these findings, surgical removal of the adenoma may be considered.