Surgery Today

, Volume 35, Issue 8, pp 692–695

Humoral Hypercalcemia Complicating Adenocarcinoma of the Sigmoid Colon: Report of a Case

  • Jun Sakata
  • Toshifumi Wakai
  • Yoshio Shirai
  • Eiko Sakata
  • Go Hasegawa
  • Katsuyoshi Hatakeyama


Humoral hypercalcemia can arise from a variety of malignancies, but its association with primary colorectal carcinoma is rare, with only 20 such cases documented in the English-language literature to date. We report an additional case to clarify the clinicopathologic features of colorectal carcinoma with humoral hypercalcemia. A 54-year-old woman was admitted with symptomatic hypercalcemia of 14.2 mg/dl and multiple hepatic metastases, 2 years after resection of sigmoid colon cancer. The hypercalcemia was caused by the circulating parathyroid hormone-related peptide (PTHrP) produced by poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma in the liver. The PTHrP level on admission was 13.5 pmol/l. Despite systemic chemotherapy, the patient died of disease progression 3 weeks after the humoral hypercalcemia was diagnosed. A review of the 21 reported cases, including ours, suggests that colorectal carcinoma associated with humoral hypercalcemia is characterized by a poorly differentiated tumor with or without squamous or neuroendocrine features, distant metastases, and a dismal prognosis.

Key words

Humoral hypercalcemia of malignancy Parathyroid hormone-related peptide Paraneoplastic syndrome Colorectal neoplasm Prognosis 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Tokyo 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jun Sakata
    • 1
  • Toshifumi Wakai
    • 1
  • Yoshio Shirai
    • 1
  • Eiko Sakata
    • 1
  • Go Hasegawa
    • 2
  • Katsuyoshi Hatakeyama
    • 1
  1. 1.Divisions of Digestive and General SurgeryNiigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental SciencesNiigataJapan
  2. 2.Divisions of PathomorphologyNiigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental SciencesNiigataJapan

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