Avatar universal

Is this an unusual dose of vitamin D3, and how long before I get my energy back?

I suffered with pneumonia in January and have never felt well since recovery. I suffer with absolutely overwhelming, constant fatigue and have barely left my house in 4 months. I find the simplest of tasks impossible - sometimes even making a cup of coffee is impossible, as it involves so much effort! I have muscle and joint pains, brainfog, lack of concentration, unsteadiness, dizziness, headaches ( rarely had headaches in the past), my hair is falling out (not a massive problem, just mild, but enough to notice) and I have started sweating more than usual.  I have had type 1 diabetes for 49 years, treated with an insulin pump.

I've been to my GP a couple of times because I am so concerned, mainly because of this intolerable loss of energy . I am usually a very active 64 year old, the life and soul of the party!

My GP said she'd like to exclude several illnesses, including vitamin D deficiency, under active thyroid and, wait for it... Diabetes!! She was very embarrassed when I pointed out I've had type 1 since a teenager! I also pointed out that a few years ago I had been found to be Vitamin D deficient, yet after approximately a year or so taking a low dose supplement, had my repeat prescription refused on the grounds that new research had concluded it was no longer fashionable to treat a low level!!

It's 2 weeks since I had a range of blood testa, so I rang the surgery yesterday, to be told that all my blood tests were normal. I wasn't happy, as the GP had told me that if everything was normal, then she'd have to conclude that I have ME. I voiced that I'd hoped my vit d was going to be low, to which she replied, it IS low, 14.1, but the doctor will talk to you about it next week. I asked if I could be given a prescription for vit D in the meantime but she insisted I wait another week. I told her how ill I felt and that I couldn't wait another week, and she reluctantly agreed to ask the GP to call me back. Needless to say, she didn't.

Today the receptionist rang to say I was to pick up a prescription for Vit D3 for 5 tabs of 20000 strength to be taken once a month for 3 months. I was expecting to be prescribed a daily dose and am rather confused by this. Has anyone else experienced this dose?

How long should I expect to wait before I experience an improvement with my energy levels?

Thank you in anticipation of some reassurance!
5 Responses
Avatar universal
A few years ago I too had no energy. Always tired and low vitamin D. I didn't have too much faith in a GP evaluating my blood work because to her a result within the normal range is " normal" when to a person highly trained in evaluating such things being at the bottom or top of the range is a cause for concern.
In short, get all your blood work results from your GP and make an appointment to see a an endocrinologist, ideally one affiliated with a a large thing hospital. Do not listen to a GP for vitamin D advice. Only an endocrinologist.
To save time, before you see the endo ask the GP for a cortisol test. And do this ASAP. This is done by giving blood at say 0800 and 1700 on the same day. Take those results to the endo.

FYI was found to have adrenal issues and that was fixed over time. Hence my name, Low Cortisol.

What you can
I would suggest you also rule out
hypothyroidism, which could be primary or secondary to low cortisol and if this is the case,  you would be much better to seek the help of a Holistic Endocrinologist.
I don't know if you have Functional Medicine Doctors in the UK, but many of them here in N.America have training in Holistic Endocrinology.
This investigation could get complicated in the hands of NHS Doctors.
There are many issues with the testing and while Low Cortisol's case was a success, there are
many more failures than successes.
It seems that we have an epidemic of FMS, CFS, Lupus, Sjogren's and other serious conditions, as consequences of under-regulated, unregulated thyroid function, or undiagnosed
low adrenal function.
As far as serum thyroid testing goes, the most indicative & accurate for cellular thyroid function are: Free T3 (fT3), Free T4 (fT4) AND Reverse T3 (rT3)
All 3 are needed!
  fT3/rT3 ratio is probably the most reliable marker for low cellular thyroid function.

To my opinion though we cannot find a better method to test than Dr. Barnes Basal Temperature Test. (there are several versions now)
I have devoted countless of hours, scanning through the studies and groundbreaking work of Dr. Barnes, The Father of Hypothyroidism, lol!
  Simply brilliant and way ahead of his time!

Instructions For Taking Basal Body Temperature:
Use an ordinary oral or rectal glass (not digital) thermometer.
Shake down the thermometer the night before, and place it on your nightstand.
The first thing in the morning BEFORE you get out of bed, place the thermometer under your arm for ten(10) minutes.
Record the temperature reading and date right away!
Repeat for 10 days.
Normal Range: 97.6 to 98.2
Averages below this range indicate hypothyroidism.
Note that in the presence of any infectious conditions, these results may be inaccurate and this could be a problem with chronic low grade infections accompanied by low grade fevers, for the purposes of the temperature testing.
As for the adrenal function testing my opinion is the 4 x cortisol saliva test, as cortisol is a circadian hormone.
FYI only,look into the Functional Adrenal Stress Profile from BioHealth Labs in the U.S.
The vitamin D dose seems to be a bit drastic, however, toxicity has not been associated with these levels of intake.
You want to be certain, the metabolized calcium (with the aid of vitamin D ) gets deposited
in the bones, joints and teeth.
For this you need a smart driver
called vitamin K2 (take daily with food containing some fat).
Hope this helps,
Avatar universal
14 is low. I was at 19 and raised levels.
Taking D3 monthly isn't as helpful to raise levels. You should take it daily. You can purchase D3 over the counter without a prescription.

I took between 2,000-10,000IU daily. Along with magnesium and vitamin K2 (I'm not on any prescription meds that conflicted with K2).

I improved slowly. My intense pain started to diminish after three weeks. Fatigue takes longer to go away. My hair still fell out in large quantities so I added B12 sublinguals and that stopped it.

It's fairly common to be low in D and B12.

Your D should be between 40-60ng/mL. Above 50 is better.

You B12 should be above 500, closer to 1,000 is better.

Diabetes may be causing you gut absorption issues. You could get liquid D3 drops to put under your tongue or rub on your skin (under clothing so it's not exposed to the sun).

Don't forget your magnesium. It's a co-factor for D.

18419259 tn?1464724021
Vitamin D helps the body absorb many other nutrients and minerals.  If you have been deficient in Vitamin D for a long time, it is possible you are deficient in other vitamins, nutrients and minerals.  Maybe you can try to supplement with a good vitamin complex?
I had all sorts of problems including hypothyroidism, vitamin D deficiency, leaky gut syndrome, hair falling out (clogging the shower drain daily and Im a dude with short hair) muscle spasms/tremors, sleep apnea, anxiety... the list goes on (and im only 33 years old).  I had to seek out an endocrinologist to help me with a sun allergy and he noticed multiple symptoms of the hypothyroidism which no other doctor noticed.  In the end I now take synthroid, Vitamin D, C, E... eat foods with K2 (since the pills were giving me odd side effects), and then B12 and antibiotics.  It wasn't until I was taking all of these vitamins that I started to feel better.  Even though I was only blood test verified for a D and B12 deficiency, taking those pills alone didn't solve it, I needed them all.  Now I feel like im 21 again, aside from the love handles.  But most other commenters make the same points; go to a good Endocrinologist, get Vitamin D to 50-60, take that K2 and all those other vitamins too.  

It took a solid year and a half until everything was better, so I guess patience is a virtue or some other nonsense.
Sorry, not "antibiotics" I meant to say probiotics
Avatar universal
Others already said it.
Taking Vitamin D in monthly doses is not enough.
Especially when your doctor suggested 20 000 IU monthly.
It shows they don't know about RDA miscalculation.
The Vitamin D RDA should be closer to 10 000 IU of D3 DAILY as can be read here:

You can also take 20 000 IU initially for about 40 to 45 days and then lower the intake to 10 000 IU daily for maintenance.

Just get Vitamin D3 10 000 IU, 365 capsules without prescription (you can easily get it on amazon for cheap, just make sure to get the GMP certified ones).

In addition to taking D3 daily, taking K2 MK-7 (100 to 200 mcg) every day or every other day is also recommended.

B12 could be suggested as well, but for now, stick to D3 and K2.
Avatar universal
my doctor has me on 50,000 once a week for 6 months. my vit d was extremely low, lower than she had ever seen. i was sleeping for days and days at a time. i have been taking 50, 000 weekly now for 4 weeks and most days i still sleep a lot but i am defiantly noticing more energy.
' with a little luck' (wink wink) you will too.
Guys you also need Magnesium!!!

What do you think happens to the calcium, which gets metabolized by D3
when you have low Magnesium?

You have to make your own luck, my friends!

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