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The parathyroid glands, a few milligrams essential to the body…


The 4 parathyroid glands (the size of a grain of rice, shown in yellow in the drawings) are located behind the thyroid; they control the calcium level in the blood very precisely (in the event of a lack of calcium - hypocalcemia - the symptoms are numerous and can be serious - tetany).

Preserving the parathyroid glands with their blood vessels is an essential goal during thyroid surgery.



The parathyroid glands have sensors -calcium sensor in the diagram- which are very sensitive to the level of calcium in the blood; any reduction in this rate caused by a diet low in calcium or a lack of vitamin D will lead to a secretion of the hormone -PTH- This acts on the bones to release calcium and on the kidneys to reduce elimination calcium in urine. 

Parathyroid glands anatomy

Posterior (back) view of the parathyroid glands with their arteries

parathyroid physio.jpg
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