Calcium is one of the most vital nutrients for our body because it forms and helps maintain healthy teeth and bones. Most consumed calcium is stored in bones and teeth, supporting skeletal function and structure.
But calcium is also required in the blood; the calcium in the blood helps your nerves work, makes your muscles squeeze so that you can move etc. Low calcium levels can cause difficulty for your body in performing these important functions.
What other problems are caused by low calcium? Does it also indicate cancer? Let us find them.
Low calcium levels: What is hypocalcemia?
Calcium is required for your body to function properly, and your hormones control the calcium levels in your blood. Hypocalcemia occurs when you have too little calcium in your blood (not bones).
It can be caused by specific genetic factors or because of certain deficiencies.
What causes hypocalcemia?
The following three are the most common causes of low calcium levels in the blood:
It happens when your parathyroid glands are not making enough parathyroid hormone (PTH). Low levels of PTH will cause low calcium levels in your body.
- Vitamin D deficiency:
Lack of Vitamin D in your body can cause low calcium levels in your blood as it helps your body absorb calcium properly.
- Kidney failure
Hypocalcemia in chronic renal failure occurs because of increased phosphorus levels in your blood and decreased renal production of certain vitamin D.
What are the symptoms of low calcium?
The symptoms of low calcium include:
- Confusion or memory loss
- Muscle spasms
- Muscle cramps
- Easy fracturing of bones
What are the side effects of low calcium?
If your body does not have enough calcium, it does have certain side effects. The following are the side effects of low calcium:
- Muscle spasm
- Fatigue or lethargy
- Weak & brittle nails
- Dental problems
As far as cancer is concerned, low calcium is a rare possibility in patients with cancer. The leading cause of low blood calcium levels is the removal of the parathyroid glands in your neck. However, people with cancer can also develop low calcium levels in the blood due to the following reasons:
- Because they do not have sufficient Vitamin D
- Their cancer is advanced and involves the bones
- After prolonged treatment with some drugs
In simple words, low calcium levels are not a sign of cancer. But that does not mean people with cancer do not develop calcium deficiency in their blood. Having enough calcium in our body is crucial to keep functioning smoothly.
Visit us at Grace Laboratory for any further information or queries.