Parathyroid Cancer: Symptoms and Signs

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 06/2017

ON THIS PAGE: You will find out more about body changes and other things that can signal a problem that may need medical care. Use the menu to see other pages.

A person with a parathyroid tumor may experience the following symptoms or signs. Sometimes, a person with a parathyroid tumor does not have any of these changes. The doctor may discover a problem if a blood test shows an increased level of calcium in the blood, a condition called hypercalcemia. Or, the cause of a symptom may be a different medical condition that is not a tumor.

  • Bone pain

  • Kidney problems, including pain in the upper back and excessive urination

  • Stomach pain

  • History of gastroduodenal ulcers, which are ulcers found in the stomach and/or small intestine

  • Weakness

  • Difficulty speaking

  • Vomiting

  • Depression

  • Fatigue

  • Confusion

  • A lump in the neck

  • Insomnia, which is trouble sleeping

  • Malaise, a general feeling of discomfort or illness

If you are concerned about any changes you experience, please talk with your doctor. You doctor will ask how long and how often you’ve been experiencing the symptom(s), in addition to other questions. This is to help figure out the cause of the problem, called a diagnosis.

If a parathyroid tumor is diagnosed, relieving symptoms remains an important part of care and treatment. This may also be called symptom management, palliative care, or supportive care. Be sure to talk with your health care team about the symptoms you experience, including any new symptoms or a change in symptoms.

The next section in this guide is Diagnosis. It explains what tests may be needed to learn more about the cause of the symptoms. You may use the menu to choose a different section to read in this guide.