Negative calcium balance and calcium nephrolithiasis are two sequelae of chronic metabolic acidosis. To establish the effects of acidosis on calcium and vitamin D metabolism, we have examined a group of nine patients with incomplete distal renal tubular acidosis. Patients were studied during a control phase and after eight months of potassium citrate treatment, 60 to 80 meq daily. Potassium citrate caused a significant decrease in urinary calcium. The fractional intestinal calcium absorption increased significantly, yet no change was observed in serum vitamin D levels. The estimated calcium balance increased significantly from -70.2 ± 63.8 to +66.7 ± 48.7 mg/d (P < 0.01). Thus, potassium citrate treatment improved the estimated calcium balance by lowering urinary calcium while increasing the fractional intestinal calcium absorption. The original hypercalciuric state, its correction to normocalciuria, and the augmentation of intestinal calcium absorption seen in these patients are probably independent of vitamin D control since there was no change noted in serum 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D levels.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism