Hypercalcemia introduction

A guideline for the management of hypercalcaemia of malignancy in palliative care


Hypercalcaemia of malignancy (HM) is one of the most common metabolic emergencies in patients with cancer. It can be highly symptomatic and it is fatal, if left untreated. HM occurs mostly in patients with advanced disease and it usually indicates poor prognosis, although does not always equate to the extent of disease.


This guideline has been produced to support the care of palliative patients with hypercalcaemia related to malignancy. These guidelines set out the diagnosis, assessment and management of hypercalcaemia.

Disclaimer (SPAGG - Rewrite)

This Guide is intended for use by healthcare professionals and the expectation is that they will use clinical judgement, medical, and nursing knowledge in applying the general principles and recommendations contained within. They are not meant to replace the many available texts on the subject of palliative care.

Some of the management strategies describe the use of drugs outside their licensed indications. They are, however, established and accepted good practice. Please refer to the current BNF for further guidance.

While WMPCPS takes every care to compile accurate information , we cannot guarantee its correctness and completeness and it is subject to change. We do not accept responsibility for any loss, damage or expense resulting from the use of this information.