What is parathyroid cancer?
Parathyroid glands are part of the endocrine system. The endocrine system is the group of glands and cells that make and release hormones into the blood to control many body functions, such as breathing and circulating blood.
Parathyroid glands make parathyroid hormone (PTH). PTH controls the amount of
Cells in any of the parathyroid glands sometimes change and no longer grow or behave normally. These changes may lead to non-cancerous (benign) tumours called parathyroid adenomas. Cell changes can also lead to a non-cancerous condition called parathyroid hyperplasia.
But in some cases, changes to parathyroid cells can cause parathyroid cancer (also called parathyroid carcinoma). It is a very rare cancerous tumour.
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National Cancer Institute. Parathyroid Cancer Treatment (PDQ®). 2016: https://www.cancer.gov/types/parathyroid/patient/parathyroid-treatment-pdq.