The effect of parenteral administration of magnesium was studied in five patients with hypomagnesaemic hypocalcaemia. The initial metabolic state was characterized by a normal level of serum immunoreactive parathyroid hormone (iPTH), and by low or undetectable serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25 (OH)2D). A parathyroid response was elicited by the acute intravenous injection of magnesium chloride. In contrast, 1,25(OH)2D did not change up to 24 h after the injection. Intramuscular magnesium sulphate restored serum magnesium and calcium to normal, whereas iPTH was transiently increased. 25OHD remained low and unchanged. 1,25(OH)2D rose very slowly, but the correction of hypocalcemia began before any change in 1,25(OH)2D levels could be demonstrated. Thus, the early correction of hypocalcemia mainly depended on the restoration of an adequate parathyroid function independently of the secretion of 1,25(OH)2D.