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Answer to your Health Question

Question (05/15/2012):

Title: Vitamin D25-OH levels are extremely low

Vitamin D25-OH levels are extremely low and after therapy are still low

My vitamin D25-OH was 12.4 so I was given 50,000 units of vitamin D once a week for 6 months and retested it is up to only 13.

Why can't I get the levels up and what could the cause be?

Answer:

Vitamin D [25(OH)D] deficiency appears to be widely prevalent in stage 5 chronic kidney disease patients.

More than three-fourths of people with a variety of cancers have low levels of vitamin D, and the lowest levels are associated with more advanced cancers, a new study presented at the 53rd Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) suggests.

Some studies have suggested a link between low vitamin D levels and cancer risk and progression, but others have not. None has proven cause and effect.

For the study above mentioned, the researchers collected blood samples from 160 men and women with cancer and measured their levels of vitamin D. The five most common diagnoses were breast, prostate, lung, thyroid , and colorectal cancers.

Among people in the study, 42% had vitamin D insufficiency, defined as levels between 20 and 30 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) of blood. An additional 32% had vitamin D deficiency, with levels less than 20 ng/mL.

The average level of vitamin D was about 24 ng/mL. People with levels below 24 ng/mL were nearly three times more likely to have stage III cancer than those with higher vitamin D levels.

As a second part of the study, the researchers treated patients with low vitamin D levels with 50,000 international units (IU) of vitamin D a week for eight weeks.

The recommended dietary allowance of vitamin D for most people is 600 IU a day, but much higher doses are often needed for the short-term treatment of vitamin D deficiency.

Ergocalciferol (a form of vitamin D, also called vitamin D 2) supplementation (50,000 IU/week x 24) was associated with significant improvements in serum 25(OH)D from baseline (18.4 +/- 9.0 ng/mL; mean +/- SD) to 6 months (42.0 +/- 24.7 ng/mL) (P < .0005) in a study conducted by Blair D, Byham-Gray L, Lewis E, and McCaffrey S. with chronic kidney disease patients.


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