Hypercalcemia complications may include:

  • Osteoporosis. If your bones continue to release calcium into your blood, you may develop the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis, which could lead to bone fractures, spinal column curvature and loss of height.
  • Kidney stones. If your urine contains too much calcium, crystals may form in your kidneys. Over time, the crystals may combine to form kidney stones (renal lithiasis). Blockage from a stone can lead to kidney damage, and passing a stone can be extremely painful.
  • Kidney failure. Severe hypercalcemia can damage your kidneys, limiting their ability to cleanse the blood and eliminate fluid. If kidney damage is severe, you may lose kidney function permanently, resulting in end-stage renal disease. People with end-stage renal disease require either permanent dialysis — a mechanical filtration system for removing toxins and waste from your body — or a kidney transplant to survive.
  • Nervous system problems. Because calcium helps regulate your nervous system, severe hypercalcemia can lead to confusion, dementia and coma, which can be fatal.
  • Abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia). Hypercalcemia can affect the electrical impulses that regulate your heartbeat, causing your heart to beat irregularly.
May. 26, 2011