Parathyroid Q&A is a community of experts and patients dedicated to understanding and treating Parathyroid Disease.

Question

Does anyone who has had this illness have issues falling down? Not losing consciousness but just collapsing and falling due to weak legs.


Answer
Deva Boone
Answer authored by Deva Boone
Deva Boone, MD is the founder of the Southwest Parathyroid Center. As one of the most experienced parathyroid surgeons in the U.S., she has treated thousands of patients with parathyroid conditions.

Yes, parathyroid disease can cause you to have more falls.

There are primarily two ways it can do this:

  1. Muscle weakness: Primary hyperparathyroidism causes muscle weakness, especially in the “proximal” muscles, the muscles closer to the center of your body. This includes the muscles involved in helping you stand and walk. Often this is mild - you feel weak but can still do normal activities. Over time it can become severe, to the point where standing from a sitting position is difficult. Read more about weakness and parathyroid disease here.

  2. Problems with balance: Parathyroid disease can cause ataxia, or problems with gait and balance. Some people report feeling dizzy or off-balance. You may feel unsteady or shaky when walking.

These symptoms will not occur in everyone with parathyroid disease. And there are other conditions that cause weakness and balance problems. But if you have parathyroid disease and have started having more falls, it is time to get it treated.

The good news is that muscle weakness and balance problems due to primary hyperparathyroidism improve after successful parathyroid surgery.

Symptoms