Background: Cinacalcet lowers plasma parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels in primary and secondary hyperparathyroidism. The efficacy and safety of cinacalcet have not been examined in renal transplant patients with persistent hyperparathyroidism. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of cinacalcet as a novel therapy for the management of such patients.
Methods: Eleven renal allograft recipients with persistent hyperparathyroidism were treated with cinacalcet. The total study time was 10 weeks. Individual cinacalcet doses were adjusted to obtain a serum calcium in the predefined normal target range of 2.10-2.60 mmol/l.
Results: Serum calcium decreased significantly from 2.73+/-0.05 mmol/l to 2.44+/-0.05 and 2.42+/- 0.04 mmol/l after 2 and 10 weeks of treatment, respectively. All patients reached the target range rapidly and remained normocalcaemic throughout the study. Serum PTH significantly decreased 16.1 and 21.8% at study weeks 2 and 10, respectively, compared with week 0. Serum phosphate increased. Renal function remained stable and no allograft rejection was observed. From weeks 2 to 10, daily cinacalcet doses administered were 30 mg (n = 8), 15 mg (n = 1) and 60 mg (n = 1), respectively.
Conclusion: Cinacalcet was effective in correcting the hypercalcaemia associated with persistent hyperparathyroidism after renal transplantation. It appears to be safe. Thus, cinacalcet represents a promising alternative for parathyroidectomy in these patients.