During the course of investigations of various disorders of calcium and phosphorus metabolism, we had the opportunity of studying a patient with nontropical sprue complicated by tetany. The association of sprue with tetany is probably not so common as was once supposed. In reviewing the literature, one finds that a number of such cases have been reported. In some of these reports no mention is made of the values of the serum calcium or serum phosphorus. A search of the literature failed to reveal any report bearing on the total calcium and phosphorus metabolism in this disease syndrome. Analysis of the data reported in this case shows why the resultant tetany was secondary to the long-standing diarrhea and not related to parathyroid deficiency.
REPORT OF CASE
HistoryA man, aged 39, married, a Jewish physician, was admitted to the metabolism ward of the Massachusetts General Hospital