Advanced renal failure is often accompanied by secondary and tertiary hyperparathyroidism. In tertiary hyperparathyroidism it is necessary to reduce the gland mass. The present study describes the response to treatment with percutanous injection of ethanol of enlarged parathyroid nodules in 9 uremic patients. All had hypercalcemia, severely elevated serum levels of parathyroid hormone and ultrasonically detectable enlarged parathyroid glands. Three patients did not respond to the treatment. In the remaining 6 patients, serum values of total and ionized calcium were normalized and the serum values of parathyroid hormone were reduced at least 30% after 18 months. Seven of the patients experienced an improvement of symptoms. No complications were seen. We conclude that treatment with ethanol injection can be used as an alternative to conventional parathyroidectomy to improve parathyroid status in selected patients.