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Is there best time to take calcium?


Is there best time to take calcium?


Andrew Rhodes, DO, FACS

Dr Drew Rhodes joined our team in 2020 from the University of North Carolina. He received his formal training in endocrine surgery at Yale University where he worked closely with Dr Tobias Carling. As Dr Carling says “Drew is the best of the best and wherever I go, I want Drew at my side. He is one of the best surgeons I have ever met.” After spending a week with Dr Norman, he agrees: “Few surgeons have the hands that Drew has and after I saw him operate I knew we had to have him on our team.”

Dr Rhodes received his general surgery training at Penn prior to fellowship training at Yale. He had a decorated military career spending 5 years as a surgeon at Walter Read Medical Center in Washington, DC. He was the Director of the Endocrine Center at HCA North Carolina for 4 years until joining the “Dream Team” in Tampa in 2020. Drew is married and has an 8 year old boy and a 4 year old girl.


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What multi-vitamin should I take?

We typically recommend that our patients take a multi-vitamin long term (for years) following a parathyroid operation. The parathyroid tumor(s) has removed calcium from your bones and your bones will heal themselves to some degree if we give them the building blocks they need to build new bone and restore the bone you have to stronger bone. It is important to understand that bones are living tissue, so they need the proper nutrients to be healthy.

Although calcium is the major mineral within bone, good bone health also requires magnesium as well as some other trace elements like strontium. The best way to get these trace elements is by taking a good multi-vitamin every day. There are a number of good brands, but we still like the typical brands that are available almost anywhere like Centrum Silver and Woman’s One-a-Day. We like the ones that are intended for senior citizens even for our youngest patients because these formulations are designed to give more bone-related nutrients and that is why we are taking these pills.

We typically tell folks to start the multi-vitamin about 2 weeks after the operation, because we already put you on 5 or more calcium pills per day. But it really doesn’t matter; you can start your multi-vitamin pill a few days after the operation if you want.


Jim Norman, MD, FACS, FACE

Dr Norman operates at Memorial Hospital of Tampa alongside Dr Tobias Carling.

Dr. James Norman is the founder of the Norman Parathyroid Center, and is by far the most experienced parathyroid surgeon in the world. He is considered the “father” of minimally invasive parathyroid surgery after a number of discoveries and developments in the early and mid-1990’s while he was Professor of Surgery and Professor of Internal Medicine at the University of South Florida. He also held the position of Director of Endocrine Surgery at USF and the Director of Surgical Core Research Laboratory. These discoveries and inventions led to a novel operative approach for the localization, identification, and real-time evaluation of parathyroid glands that transformed a 4-hour exploratory operation into a 20-minute out-patient procedure.

For two decades, Dr Norman has been the leading international voice for innovation in parathyroid surgery and for the understanding of the long-term effects of hyperparathyroidism. No doctor of this generation has had as much of an impact on endocrine surgery as he has.

Dr Norman is a member of more than 20 medical societies, and is one of only a handful of surgeons who is also a fellow of the American College of Endocrinology (FACE). He has been recognized as one of America’s Top Surgeons for 15 years and is rated in the top 1% of all surgeons by US News and World Reports. His career has been highlighted by dozens of local, national and international awards. He has published more than 250 medical journal articles as well as 12 books and/or book chapters. Dr Norman and his team have published the 8 largest parathyroid articles of all time (most patients). He holds 6 US and foreign patents including the patent for the techniques and tools used in radioguided parathyroidectomy.

Dr Norman was a central member of the prestigious Moffitt Cancer Center team that helped develop sentinel lymph node mapping for breast cancer and melanoma. He has received more than $4.2 million in federal and industry grants to support his research, including grants from the Department of Veteran’s Affairs.

Dr Norman (he prefers to be called “Jim”) is an entrepreneur surgeon, having re-defined parathyroid surgery in the operating room and now through the use of innovative diagnostic tools, mobile apps, and software programs. The CalciumPro app has helped over 100,000 patients and doctors diagnose hyperparathyroidism.

One of Dr Norman’s greatest skills is in team building and changing processes. As you know, getting you to this point was probably the easiest and most organized medical experience of your life. He has assembled the “Dream Team” of the world’s best endocrine surgeons at the Norman Parathyroid Center and sister-centers, the Clayman Thyroid Cancer Center and the Carling Adrenal Center.

Norman’s clinical interests are now primarily within re-operative parathyroid surgery–the most difficult and challenging parathyroid cases. It is estimated that Dr Norman has performed over 22,000 parathyroid operations including over 1600 parathyroid re-operations.


Jamie Mitchell, MD, FACS

Dr. Jamie Mitchell went to Holy Cross University for his undergraduate degree and then on to Georgetown University for Medical School. He went to Harvard University for his surgery training, spending 7 years in Boston from his intern year through his chief resident years as a Clinical Fellow in Surgery. He then underwent 1 year of specialty training in endocrine surgery (thyroid, parathyroid, adrenal) at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. He stayed on faculty at Cleveland Clinic for 6 years as a senior thyroid/parathyroid surgeon until early 2015 when he moved to Tampa to join our ‘Dream Team’ of the best parathyroid surgeons in the world.

Dr Mitchell is an extremely gifted surgeon and an expert in complex parathyroid surgery, especially when combined with thyroid problems. He has some 40 scientific publications and is a frequent speaker at national meetings on advanced ultrasound techniques for neck tumors. He is a member of many medical societies, including all of the thyroid societies and endocrine societies. He has received many awards, including being chosen as one of America’s Top Doctor’s 8 years in a row.


Kevin Parrack, MD, FACS

Dr Kevin Parrack joined the “Dream Team” of parathyroid surgeons in Tampa from Columbia University where he was on faculty as an endocrine surgeon for several years following his fellowship training in endocrine (thyroid/parathyroid) surgery at the Cleveland Clinic (Ohio). Dr Parrack received his BS degree in biochemistry from NYU, and then did his surgery training at New York Presbyterian Hospital before going to study endocrine surgery at the Cleveland Clinic.

Kevin has a calming personality that makes the most nervous patient at ease and confident. His great demeanor and wonderful surgical skills makes Kevin one of the best, most thoughtful parathyroid surgeons in the world. He isn’t just loved by the patients, he is loved by all of the hospital and operating room staff. His resume includes over a dozen scientific research publications and like most of our surgeons, is married to another very successful doctor.


Dan Ruan, MD, FACS

Dr. Dan Ruan joined the Norman Parathyroid Center from Harvard University where he was the director of endocrine surgery (thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal surgery) and the director of Harvard’s endocrine surgery fellowship program, tasked with teaching the next generation of thyroid and parathyroid surgeons. Dr Ruan went to medical school at Duke University and then did his surgical training and residency at Harvard. He then went to UCSF for additional fellowship training in endocrine surgery.

Dr Ruan is extremely intelligent with a warm personality that makes every patient calm and assured. His knowledge of parathyroid disease is unrivaled and his insight into how parathyroid surgery is performed very differently throughout the US and other countries is amazing to hear. He brings tremendous surgical skills and his experience with minimally invasive techniques makes Dan one of the best and insightful parathyroid surgeons in the world. Dan is loved by all the patients and hospital staff because he is so up-beat and positive.

Dan has published over 40 scientific journal articles including in the New England Journal of Medicine. He currently leads our basic-science research division.