The causes of hypercalcaemia in the neonate and infant are varied, and often distinct from those in older children and adults. Hypercalcaemia presents clinically with a range of symptoms including failure to thrive, poor feeding, constipation, polyuria, irritability, lethargy, seizures and hypotonia. When hypercalcaemia is suspected, an accurate diagnosis will require an evaluation of potential causes (e.g. family history) and assessment for physical features (such as dysmorphology, or subcutaneous fat deposits), as well as biochemical measurements, including total and ionised serum calcium, serum phosphate, creatinine and albumin, intact parathyroid hormone (PTH), vitamin D metabolites and urinary calcium, phosphate and creatinine. The causes of neonatal hypercalcaemia can be classified into high or low PTH disorders. Disorders associated with high serum PTH include neonatal severe hyperparathyroidism, familial hypocalciuric hypercalcaemia and Jansen’s metaphyseal chondrodysplasia. Conditions associated with low serum PTH include idiopathic infantile hypercalcaemia, Williams-Beuren syndrome and inborn errors of metabolism, including hypophosphatasia. Maternal hypocalcaemia and dietary factors and several rare endocrine disorders can also influence neonatal serum calcium levels. This review will focus on the common causes of hypercalcaemia in neonates and young infants, considering maternal, dietary, and genetic causes of calcium dysregulation. The clinical presentation and treatment of patients with these disorders will be discussed.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The author acknowledges support from an Academy of Medical Sciences Springboard Award (Ref: SBF004|1034), which is supported by the British Heart Foundation, Diabetes UK, the Global Challenges Research Fund, the Government Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Wellcome Trust.
© 2021, The Author(s).
- Calcium homeostasis
- Genetic disease
- Parathyroid hormone
- Vitamin D
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health