Indian Journal of Nuclear Medicine
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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 5-10

Parathyroid scintigraphy, histopathology correlation in patients with tropical pancreatitis and coexisting primary hyperparathyroidism

Department of Nuclear Medicine and PET CT, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Cochin, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Subramanyam Padma
Department of Nuclear Medicine & PET CT, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences & Research Centre, Cochin - 682 041, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-3919.116796

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Purpose: Tropical pancreatitis (TP) is a juvenile, non-alcoholic type of chronic pancreatitis and is highly prevalent in Kerala, India. Increasing prevalence of TP and its varied manifestations prompted us to undertake this retrospective analysis. We attempted to study the incidence of TP in patients with primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT) and correlate with calcium levels, scintigraphy and histopathology findings. Materials and Methods: Records of 44 hypercalcemic patients with raised parathormone (PTH) were analyzed. Clinical, biochemical and imaging findings were noted to look for diabetes mellitus and pancreatitis. All patients underwent dual phase 99m Technetium methoxy isobutyl isonitrile parathyroid scintigraphy in our department between January 2007 and 2010. Gamma probe assisted minimally invasive parathyroidectomy was performed. Histopathological correlation was obtained in all patients. Results: Our study shows 18% (8/44 patients) incidence of TP in patients with PHPT (compared to 7% reported in 1970's) in Kerala. Results show involvement of middle aged, non-alcoholic males. No direct association between severity of diabetes, pancreatitis and PHPT was noted in our series. Parathyroid adenoma was the most common underlying pathology. All TP patients' clinical outcome improved post parathyroidectomy. TP patients with PHPT demonstrated adenomas, mainly composed of oxyphilic cells. Non pancreatitis group interestingly showed a varied picture of adenoma, hyperplasia with predominance of chief cells histologically. Conclusion: There is a 2.6 fold increase in the incidence of TP (18%) in patients with PHPT. Hypercalcemia may be the causative factor leading to TP in PHPT patients in our limited series. The data suggests a causal association between pancreatitis and PHPT. Patients presenting with either one or a combination of hypercalcemia, pancreatic dysfunction or raised PTH need to be thoroughly evaluated as their management is interlinked.

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