It’s a no brainer…High Calcium is BAD!

Flash back…..

My husband and I were on our way to see a movie and for him, Milk Duds are an essential part of the movie-going experience. So I suggested that we stop at a convenience store on our way that sold super sized cartons. I knew that my guy would be a happy camper with a box (or two) stashed in my purse for later consumption! “I’ll be right back – no need for us to both get out, you can just stay in the car.” I chimed.

It was easy to find the rack of candy that spanned a full aisle in the small store. I scanned the shelves and perused all the different shapes, sizes, colors and names looking for the familiar golden-colored box.


Normally I am able to easily scan shelves quickly and find the product I am looking for – no problem. In fact it is so automatic, that I just do it without having to think at all.   However this time things were different!  I simply could not find what I was looking for no matter how hard I tried. I was really confused. “Focus”, I thought to myself. I couldn’t help but wonder though what was wrong with me! Why was it SO difficult to distinguish one type of candy from another? I felt like I couldn’t “see”. Like something heavy was  hanging over my eyes.

It wasn’t that I couldn’t see though. My vision was perfectly clear.  The thought crossed my mind that I must be reacting to the fluorescent lights in the store. “Yes, that must be the problem” I concluded, trying to soothe my ever-increasing anxiety. I looked up to check out the lights.  I shook my head to try to “see” straight. I had to remind myself to relax, that there was no need to panic. I was just picking out candy for God’s sake. I can do this. Get a grip!

After what seemed like eternity, I finally spotted what I was looking for and made my way to the cash register to pay and quickly escape, happy to once again be outside in the fresh air, sunlight and away from those cluttered, confusing shelves and bright lights.

This experience left me feeling a bit frightened. Little did I know that this was only the first of many uncomfortable and strange physical sensations that I would experience as a result of  having high blood calcium from one of my four parathyroid glands becoming a non-cancerous adenoma ( you can learn more about the function of the parathyroid glands HERE and about how calcium affects the brain on’s blog post HERE.

After multiple episodes similar to this one, I realized that it had nothing to do with my eye-site or the bright lights, but rather it was my inability to process the details of what I was seeing. If you read our website you will learn that brain fog is just one of many symptoms caused by primary hyperparathyroid disease and according to experts,  it is one commonly reported by patients who suffer from the disease.



Do you suffer from brain fog or any of the other debilitating symptoms associated with primary hyperparathyroid disease? Learn more on this website to help ensure that you, or someone you love, does not go undiagnosed and suffer needlessly. If you have questions about our experiences, please feel free to contact us. 



3 thoughts on “It’s a no brainer…High Calcium is BAD!

  1. Dear Barbara, Im happy for you, and Im supposing that you were able to have your adenoma removed,right? I have been diagnose with it also, and Ive been so far to 2 surgeons- one states that heis a Parathyroid Expert ” and both cannot even locate my glands. I have had 3 tests and all 3 test at two different hospitals cannot pick up my glands either. Im going to try another MD in Albany on Feb1st -his name is Dr.Byer -and I just really dont want to have to drive 2 hrs for another appointment if he is going to say the same thing – that if he cant find the parathyroid glands-hes not going to go searching for them -as one doctor told me. By the way – a good thing- one hospital didnt make me pay the copay for the scans as their techs couldnt find my glands-and they apologized! What should I do? Florida seems so far away money wise. I already have all my labs and scan results I got myself.Do you think that the Norman clinic could give a discount on the fee? Thank You very much. Cathy Marshall


    • Yes all three of us had our adenomas removed at the Norman Parathyroid Center. You can read each of our stories on our website where this blog is found. Parathyroid disease is diagnosed biochemically – through blood work. Sounds like that is how you were diagnosed even though they cannot find the “culprit”through imaging. It is quite possible your adenoma is right behind the thyroid where it should be and that is perhaps why they can’t spot it on an image (blocked by the thyroid). That is not at all unusual. Surgeons who do focused surgeries generally need/want to see the offending gland on a scan so that they know exactly what they are going after. This is referred to as a focused surgery. This would likely mean that they would not be checking the three remaining glands. In approximately 30% of cases, patients have a second adenoma. Parathyroid glands and adenomas can be extremely difficult to find. Please listen to our podcast In the Operating Room – with Dr. Deva Boone to learn the differences in how surgeries are performed. Experts make it sound easy and can locate all 4 in 30 minutes or less, but it actually requires a vast amount of knowledge of the anatomy of the neck.

      In relation to your question about NPC’s fee… while all 3 of us had our surgeries at the Norman Parathyroid Center we do not work for them so cannot speak to what they might do in relation to their consult fee. However we have seen them post comments saying that they will work with people if the fee is going to be a financial burden and to not let that become an obstacle in receiving the treatment you desire.

      These surgeons are actually doing you a huge favor by not going in and “exploring”. They clearly know their limitations. We do not think it is wise to try and convince a surgeon to explore as the scar tissue that is formed often prevents expert parathyroid surgeons from being able to cure the patient. We feel it is important to find surgeons that performs a minimally invasive, radio guided surgery and is able to check all 4 glands in under 1/2 hour. This is why we selected NPC- they have a crew who do it this way. Hope this information is helpful.


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