Your thyroid gland is one of the endocrine glands that makes hormones to regulate physiological functions in your body, like metabolism (heart rate, sweating, energy consumed). Other endocrine glands include the pituitary, adrenal, and parathyroid glands and specialized cells within the pancreas.
The parathyroid glands are four tiny glands in the neck. They are usually no bigger than grains of rice. Their job is to control the level of calcium in the blood.
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Thyroid problems are common and affect many people. Having a thyroid problem may mean that your thyroid gland(s) is underactive and doesn’t want to work hard enough. Or, it may mean that your gland is overactive and works to hard. Your thyroid gland may also grow larger or develop lumps.
In some cases, one or more of the parathyroid glands becomes enlarged. The gland(s) become too active, leading to problems throughout the body.
Problems with the thyroid can be very noticeable and cause many symptoms, including changes in your energy level.
Parathyroid gland problems are often nonspecific and people don’t realize they have a problem. Possible symptoms include:
- Muscle weakness, tiredness
- Confusion, poor memory, depression
- Nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, hard stools
- Frequent thirst, need to urinate often
- Joint or bone pain
Depending on what has caused the thyroid problem, it can be treated with medications, thyroid hormones, surgery or destroyed with radioactive iodine.
Surgery can be done to remove enlarged parathyroid glands. This allows the level of calcium in the blood to go back to normal.