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Medicine (MD/DO)
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First Aid
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First Aid for the USMLE Step 1 (2023)
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Calcification Types

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Calcification Types

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Calcification Types

Calcified-cow Typewriter
DikeHAfifi
10 KEY FACTS
TYPES
Dystrophic Calcification
Disc-trophy Calcified-Cow

Calcification occurs due to the buildup of calcium in the body tissues. There are two types of calcification: dystrophic calcification and metastatic calcification.

Calcium Deposits in Abnormal (Diseased) Tissues
Calcium-cow Deposits in Abnormal Tissues

Dystrophic calcification is characterized by calcium deposition in abnormal (diseased) tissues. Disorders linked to this type of calcification may include atherosclerotic plaques, TB (lung and pericardium) and other granulomatous infections, liquefactive necrosis of chronic abscesses, congenital CMV, rubella, toxoplasmosis, schistosomiasis, thrombi, necrosis, infarcts, CREST syndrome, and psammoma bodies.

Localized
Local

The extension of dystrophic calcification tends to be localized. This characteristic can be seen in calcific aortic stenosis. Dystrophic calcification can be found in the area of the heart and skeletal muscles and is rarely seen in the head and neck area.

Occurs due to Injury or Necrosis
Injury Necrosis-crow

Dystrophic calcification occurs secondary due to injury or necrosis. It is often associated with infection, inflammation, or trauma, and the necrotic tissue acts as a nidus for calcification.

Normal Calcium Level
Normal-sign Calcium-cow

Dystrophic calcification is characterized by normal calcium levels. This differs from metastatic calcification, which is characterized by abnormal calcium levels.

Metastatic Calcification
(Metastasis) Mitt Calcified-cow

Calcification occurs due to the buildup of calcium in the body tissues. There are two types of calcification: dystrophic calcification and metastatic calcification.

Calcium Deposits in Normal Tissues
Calcium-cow Deposits in Normal Tissues

Metastatic calcification is characterized by the deposition of calcium in normal tissues. It can be seen in hyperparathyroidism that leads to nephrocalcinosis.

Diffuse
D-fuse

Metastatic calcification tends to be widespread to the entire body, which makes it known as diffuse and metastatic.

Occurs due to Hypercalcemia or Hyperphosphatemia
Hiker-calcified-cow or Hiker-phosphate-P

Metastatic calcification occurs due to hypercalcemia or hyperphosphatemia. It is seen predominantly in interstitial tissues of the lung, kidney, and gastric mucosa. Acids lose quickly in these tissues, making the pH high enough to deposit more calcium.

Abnormal Calcium Level
Abnormal Calcium-cow

Metastatic calcification is characterized by abnormal calcium levels. This differs from dystrophic calcification, which is characterized by normal calcium levels.

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