The diagnosis of primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT) remains a challenge because of increased asymptomatic PHPT or patients with normocalcaemic PHPT (NPHPT). In addition, some primary hospitals in China have no equipment to measure parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels. Therefore, an additional, simple, and inexpensive laboratory biochemical marker is urgently needed. The calcium/phosphate (Ca/P) ratio and chloride/phosphate (Cl/P) ratio have been proposed as suitable tools to diagnose PHPT in Europe; however, the Ca/P ratio has never been tested in China. We aimed to conduct a confirmatory study to explore the diagnostic performance of the Ca/P ratio for PHPT in China.
From January 2015 to December 2020, a total of 155 patients who underwent parathyroidectomy (143 PHPT patients and 12 NPHPT patients) and 153 controls were enrolled in this single-center , retrospective study. Serum calcium, phosphate, parathyroid hormone, 25-hydroxyvitamin vitamin D (25(OH) vitamin D), chloride, alanine transaminase (ALT), aspartate aminotransaminase (AST), estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), and creatinine levels were recorded for all the study participants. Pairwise comparisons were made between groups, and the diagnostic performance of the Ca/P ratio was determined using receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) analysis.
Patients with PHPT had a higher Ca/P ratio than controls (P < 0.001). A Ca/P ratio above 2.94 with a sensitivity of 95.5% and specificity of 98.7% can distinguish PHPT patients from healthy individuals. This index was positively correlated with the PTH level (r = 0.875, P < 0.001).
The Ca/P ratio is an ideal and inexpensive indicator for diagnosing PHPT in China when using a cut-off value of 2.94.