Transplantation of the parathyroid glands in man: clinical indications and results.
The physiologic function of human parathyroid autografts and allografts has not been demonstrated conclusively. During the past 30 months, we have transplanted parathyroid glands in 29 patients and tested their functional status. One immunosuppressed aparathyroid patient received a parathyroid allograft from a parent who previously had been his renal transplant donor. Twenty-seven patients with renal failure and secondary hyperparathyroidism received parathyroid autografts immediately after total parathyroidectomy, and one patient received a parathyroid autograft at the time of total parathyroidectomy for primary chief cell hyperplasia. At transplantation 1 times 1 mm. parathyroid pieces were grafted into the forearm musculature. Of 11 transplanted patients (one allograft and ten autografts) followed for 1 year, ten are normocalcemic; only two (autografted patients) are on supplemental calcium. Ten of the 29 patients have had biopsies performed, and all have had intact parathyroid architecture and intracellular secretory granules demonstrated by light and electron microscopy. Parathyroid hormone content in the grafted tissue of five patients was 179 plus or minus 118.8 ng. per milligram. In 11 random patients in whom bilateral measurements have been made, the parathyroid hormone content in the antecubital vein blood draining the grafted tissue has been markedly higher than that in the simultaneously sampled antecubital vein blood of the nongrafted arm. These data demonstrate that parathyroid autografts or allografts secret hormone and maintain a normal serum calcium in the host.
Wells, SA; Gunnells, JC; Shelburne, JD; Schneider, AB; Sherwood, LM
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