What Is Parathyroidectomy Surgery Procedure?

Parathyroidectomy surgical procedure

When our furry friends fall ill, the remedies aren't always straightforward. Some treatments might sound downright mysterious in the vast world of veterinary medicine! Such as parathyroidectomy surgery. Let's discuss all details of this procedure, 

What Are Parathyroid Glands?

The body system of our pets is very intricate, and the parathyroid glands are a small but important part of it. These glands are located behind the thyroid. They are responsible for controlling calcium levels in the blood. Calcium helps in keeping bones strong and teeth shiny!

What Is the Removal of The Parathyroid Gland? 

It's a surgical procedure that removes one or more pesky parathyroid glands, whether it's a tumor or an overactive gland causing problems. 

Chances of Parathyroidectomy in Dogs

Dogs sometimes require parathyroidectomy. Here's what you need to know:

  • Why It Happens: Hyperparathyroidism, tumors, or other gland issues could lead to surgery. 
  • Symptoms to Watch: If Fido is drinking a lot, peeing more, or losing weight, talk to your vet. Definitely, he is suffering from a disease. It means the situation is not simple. 

Parathyroid Gland in Cats

Cats aren't left out of this equation. Here's what to know about parathyroid glands in cats:

  • Different, But Similar: Cats have parathyroid glands just like dogs, but the conditions might vary.
  • Watch for Signs: Keep an eye on Fluffy's behavior. If something seems off, it might be a clue.
  • Surgery in Cats: It's less common, but parathyroidectomy might be needed in cats, too. It's about finding the right fix.

When Is Parathyroidectomy Surgery Necessary?

  • Hyperparathyroidism: If the parathyroid glands are overactive, it means there's too much calcium in the blood. It's like a wild party that's gotten out of control. The surgery puts a stop to it by removing the problem gland(s).
  • Tumors: Like humans, pets can also develop tumors in the glands. If this happens, surgery might be the best option to remove them.
  • Symptomatic Relief: sometimes, our pets suffer from loss of appetite and vomiting because the glands are a nuisance. Surgeries can solve this problem and improve your pet’s life. 

Complications and Risks of Parathyroidectomy 

No treatment out there is without complications. Following are the risks that can happen 

  • Infection: As with any surgery, there's always the risk of infection. Proper aftercare is vital to avoid this.
  • Damage to Nearby Structures: Those little glands are nestled close to other essential parts, and sometimes they might get injured during surgery.
  • Changes in Calcium Levels: Surprisingly, surgical correction of calcium levels can lead to imbalances. 

The Parathyroidectomy Procedure for Pets

Now let’s discuss the complete Parathyroidectomy procedure, 

How is Parathyroidectomy Surgery Performed?

Parathyroidectomy in dogs is delicate and precise, and each step is crucial. 

  1. Preparation: First, your vet will run some tests to figure out what's going on. This helps them plan the surgery.
  2. Anesthesia: Your pet is put to sleep so they don't feel a thing. No need to worry, though; it's like taking a peaceful nap.
  3. The Incision: The vet makes a small cut near the neck. It's the doorway to reach those pesky glands.
  4. Gland Removal: The overactive or problematic gland(s) is carefully removed. It's a game of skill and precision.
  5. Closure: The incision is closed up, and your pet is on their way to parathyroidectomy recovery!

What are the Different Types of Parathyroidectomy Surgery?

  • Total Parathyroidectomy: All the removal of the parathyroid gland happens. It's like clearing the deck.
  • Subtotal Parathyroidectomy: Some, but not all, of the glands are taken out. This approach might be used if multiple glands are causing trouble.
  • Partial Parathyroidectomy: Only one gland is removed. This method is used if just one gland is acting up.

What Happens During Parathyroidectomy Surgery?

Here's what you can expect during the surgery:

  • Monitoring: Your pet's vital signs are watched like a hawk. It's all about making sure things go smoothly.
  • Skilled Surgeon at Work: A well-trained vet performs the surgery. It's like having a master mechanic working on your car.
  • Time: The surgery usually takes a couple of hours, so bring a good book to read.
  • Parathyroidectomy Recovery: After the surgery, your pet will wake up, probably feeling a bit groggy. It's normal; after all, surgery is a big deal!

Considerations Before Removal Of The Parathyroid Gland

According to all kinds of surgical procedures, some potential complications can occur with the usage of anesthesia. For instance, the issue can occur due to the high calcium level in the body. In addition, there are some potential effects of cardiac problems. For example, approximately 10 % of dogs have a chance to develop parathyroidectomy hypocalcemia, and it can be severely life-threatening. Additionally, the parathyroid gland should be removed to save the dog's life.


Similar to other tumors, there is no apparent cause of parathyroid. Therefore, studies have suggested that the problem is transferable in genes. Moreover, it is seen in the keeshond breed of dogs. Besides, there are no similar chances that the disease could occur due to sex or age. Therefore, it is wise to know about dogs' health before buying them. Some dog breeds are susceptible to a high risk of tumors. Standard blood work and annual check-ups are necessary to know any disease or symptoms.

Parathyroidectomy Cost

Here's what can affect the parathyroidectomy cost:

  • Type of Surgery: Different methods may have different price tags.
  • Location: Just like real estate, it's all about location, location, location. Costs can vary by region.
  • Veterinarian Experience: A seasoned vet might charge more. But hey, expertise is worth it!
  • Additional Care: If there are complications, the cost might go up. 

If your pet is going to get this surgery, you don’t need to worry. Just consult the vet, and don’t hesitate to get to know about every little detail. 

With their guidance, you'll navigate this journey like a pro. After all, our furry friends are family, and we want what's best for them, right?

Also, learn about Perineal Hernia to give your pet a healthy and happy life.