Nuclear diameter was measured in 55 parathyroid chief-cell adenomas to determine its value in histological diagnosis and to assess its relationship to other features of primary hyperparathyroidism. Mean nuclear diameter for the whole group of adenomas was significantly greater than that for the accompanying normal glands. Mean nuclear diameter in individual adenomas was significantly greater than that in the accompanying normal gland in 27 out of 34 cases. Nuclear diameter was correlated with tumour weight and with plasma calcium but was not correlated with duration of history. It was significantly greater in the group of patients with overt bone disease than in those with kidney stones and in those with neither kidney stones nor overt bone disease. Assessment of nuclear diameter is of value in histological diagnosis of parathyroid adenoma. The rate of growth of the adenoma may be a factor determining nuclear diameter.
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