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Overview of the Parathyroid Glands and Disorders of Calcium Metabolism

By

Mark E. Peterson

, DVM, DACVIM, Animal Endocrine Clinic

Last full review/revision Jul 2013 | Content last modified Jul 2013

The physiology and disorders of calcium and phosphate metabolism, the function of vitamin D (which acts more like a hormone than a vitamin), and the formation of bone are all tied together in a common system along with two other regulatory hormones—parathyroid hormone (PTH) and calcitonin. Therefore, PTH, calcitonin, and vitamin D are discussed in this chapter together with the associated disorders of calcium homeostasis.

Because aberrant calcium and phosphorus metabolism is reflected in the skeletal system, specific syndromes are presented in that section. (Also see Dystrophies Associated with Calcium, Phosphorus, and Vitamin D Dystrophies Associated with Calcium, Phosphorus, and Vitamin D read more .)

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The Endocrine System
The endocrine system consists of ductless tissues that release a variety of hormones into the blood in a regulated fashion. Hormone molecules belong to different classes. Which class of hormones is the most likely to vary in molecular composition from species to species?
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