Journal of Endocrinological Investigation

, Volume 23, Issue 4, pp 263–267 | Cite as

Development of tertiary hyperparathyroidism after phosphate supplementation in oncogenic osteomalacia

  • Q. L. Huang
  • D. S. Feig
  • M. E. Blackstein
Case Report


Oncogenic osteomalacia is a rare paraneoplastic syndrome. It is characterized by bone pain, muscle weakness, gait disturbance, fractures and skeletal deformities. Hypophosphatemia, diminished renal phosphate reabsorption, decreased 1,25 dihydroxy Vitamin D and elevated alkaline phosphatase are the biochemical hallmarks of this disorder. Most tumors are of mesenchymal origin. We report the case of a 39-yearold woman with oncogenic osteomalacia caused by osteosarcoma of the right scapula which was unrecognized for several years. She subsequently developed tertiary hyperparathyroidism after treatment with oral phosphate and Vitamin D. This case illustrates that oncogenic osteomalacia may persist for many years before the tumor is discovered. This is because the tumors are frequently very small and are in obscure locations. The uniqueness of this case is the coexistence of hyperparathyroidism and oncogenic osteomalacia. Five other cases have been reported up to date. All patients had received phosphate supplement, ranging from 10 to 14 years prior to their diagnosis. Interestingly, our patient was on the treatment for only 2 years. The proposed mechanism is that exogenous phosphate stimulates parathyroid activity through sequestration of calcium.

Key words

Oncogenic osteomalacia tertiary hyperparathyroidism hypophosphatemia 


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Copyright information

© Italian Society of Endocrinology (SIE) 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Q. L. Huang
    • 1
  • D. S. Feig
    • 1
  • M. E. Blackstein
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Endocrinology, Mount Sinai HospitalUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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