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Hypocalcemia – Causes and Symptoms of Hypocalcemia

Hypocalcemia is a medical condition in which the calcium levels in blood decrease. It is regarded as an electrolyte imbalance. Calcium is an important element and performs many functions of the body. It maintains the health of teeth and bones and also necessary for nerve and normal muscle functioning. The calcium levels in the body are maintained by parathyroid hormone, intestines and kidneys. The normal range of calcium in the body should be 4.5-5.5 mEg/L.

Causes of Hypocalcemia
Hypocalcemia has many wide range of causes. The causes include:

  • Kidney failure
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Magnesium deficiency
  • Certain types of blood disorders such as leukemia
  • Medications taken for high calcium levels can cause hypocalcemia
  • Medications such as laxatives, magnesium supplements, insulin, glucose, estrogens and diuretics may also lead to hypocalcemia
  • A prior chemotherapeutic treatment for tumour may cause hypocalcemia
  • Diet that includes phosphates, caffeine and some antibiotics make calcium intake down

Symptoms of Hypocalcemia
Long-term hypocalcemia i.e chronic condition may not show any symptoms or signs of hypocalcemia. In acute condition, i.e sudden drops in calcium levels may show a number of symptoms. The signs and symptoms of hypocalcemia are as follows:

  • Involuntary muscle contractions
  • Muscle spasms of feet that are very painful
  • Muscle spasms of hands
  • Muscle spasms of face
  • Abnormal sensations like tingling, pricking on foot, fingers, tongue an lips
  • Muscle aches
  • State of depression, confusion
  • Improper heart muscle contractions
  • Frequent urination
  • Loss of appetite
  • Severe constipation, diarrhoea and vomiting

Diagnosis of Hypocalcemia
Hypocalcemia is diagnosed through some blood tests. The medical professional performs certain tests to detect the calcium levels in blood. Even albumin levels are detected to estimate the calcium levels. Tests are also done to know the cause for the disease condition. The cause for hypocalcemia is thus detected and necessary treatment is given.

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