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Vitamin D Deficiency

For anyone wishing to learn about the multitude of conditions that happen as a result of Vit D deficiency, you can read the New England  Journal of Medicine article by Dr. Michael F. Holick, noted as the world's renown expert on Vitamin D by the Vitamin D Council (www.vitamindcouncil.com) by going to www.vitamindhealth.org and clicking on "original journal articles".  There is also an external link to a presentation made by Dr. Holick to the European Calcified Tissue Council that is very entertaining to watch and includes the most incredible information.  It is a live stream and if your computer screen goes black, just click any key to watch the rest of the slides.  Your doc can't help it if s/he doesn't know about the current Vit D levels.  30 used to be the bottom acceptable number, but now it is 50 -- and that is just to maintain minimum Vit D.  If your level is 32, don't let someone tell you it is "normal."  You'll see from the NEJM article that every cell in your body has vit D receptors.  Low Vit D can cause everything from osteomalacia (adult form rickets) that produces bone pain and muscle pain to cancers, MS, etc.  If your Vit D is low, your body cannot absorb calcium no matter how much you take or get in your food.  Then your calcium is low which leads to heart conditions and everything else listed in the article or on the ECTS video.  When your doc checks your blood, however, your calcium will look normal.  That is because your body is busy robbing calcium from your bones and teeth to meet the needs of your vital organs.  Your doc has to measure ionized calcium, not serum calcium, to obtain an accurate calcium level for a person with a vit D deficiency.  Most docs did not learn about this in medical school.  Dr. Holick has been doing this research for at least 30 years.  I know a hospital administrator who explained to me that it takes new medical information a minimum of 20 years to make it into mainstream medical practice.  Some of you are frustrated that you cannot find out what "causes" the deficiency.  There is not enough Vit D in food or today's multivitamins.  (see video/read NEJM article).  Most of us MUST take a supplement.  And most of us are not in the sun 10 minutes each day with 25% of our skin uncovered.  Most docs are skeptical of new information until it is proven, proven, proven again.  They want to make sure they don't make their patients sick.  Educate yourself.  You can also read a newsletter and articles about current Vit D info on the vitamindcouncil website.  Amazing stuff.  One of my docs suggested I try an antidepressant for my symptoms of numbness, tingling, cramping in my feet, chronic infection, deteriorating teeth, terrible joint, muscle, bone pain.  Maybe I should go back and ask that doc which antidepressant he would recomment for the Vit D deficiency he missed?  I believe the current treatment is 50,000 iu/week for 8 weeks, then perhaps every other week if the level is still low.  I now take 4,000 iu a day (from wholesale food store or drugstore).  The American Academy of Pediatrics just raised their recommended limits and even newborns should be getting supplements.  10 minutes of sunlight every day can help unless you live above Atlanta, Ga and then you can only make D a few short months of the year.  Otherwise, take a supplement!  This condition is considered epidemic by many doctors.  And more and more of them are learning about this problem every day.  You can search on any medical condition i.e. "Parkinson's and Vit D deficiency", "asthma and Vit D deficiency" and you will be amazed at what you find.  I would also recommend sending a question to a MedHelp Expert.  It is a very reasonable fee and you will get a specific answer emailed back to you that can also benefit your online friends.  It worked for me.  I have about 5 friends who recently found out they are deficient.  Good luck, everyone! Don't be D-ficient!!! minmtn


This discussion is related to Vitamin D Deficiency ?.
40 Responses
471161 tn?1317194550
I have been Vit. D deficient off and on as far as I know for 3 years now.  I was on 50,000.iu once a week and then it was found that a mega dose such as that did not do the job as well and a daily dose.  I now take 6000 iu per day and sometimes more because in my last workup I was a bit deficient again.  I also have lupus and I have been told my disease causes the deficiency but I also wonder if the lack of Vit. D might have contributed to me getting lupus.  As the woman said in the first post a few years ago, I have all the fatigue, muscle and joint pain etc.  I have also had issues with the electrical system of my heart and a chronic cough.  I would suggest to everyone to have their Vit. D checked and if they are having other symptoms such as fatigue and/or pain they push to get answers.  I have learned with lupus that I have to be my own advocate.  I do not just take what one doctor says as the truth.  I have made a few doctors mad but hey the very first one I went to told me I had Mono and didn't even know what an ANA test was.  The only reason I knew to ask for an ANA test was because I knew someone with lupus.  I couldn't believe this PCP did not know what that was.  Since then and a few other idiots i have come across, I question everything and read as much as I can.  Thanks for posting this.
1156694 tn?1265213626
Thank you for posting this.  I have recently been diagnosed with Vitamin D def.  I had been suffering from being off balance (rocking like on a boat), extreme fatigue, muscle and joint pain just to name a few of my symptoms.  I had to push to get a Vitamin screen.  Turns out two vitamins were low to extremely low.  Vitamin b12 and Vitamin D.  I hope the medical community gets educated quicker than you mentioned.  I am starting the Vitamin D at 50,000IU weekly.  I cross my fingers that this helps the symptoms.
Avatar universal
Have you been to a cardiologist about the electrical disturbances and chronic cough?  Checked ionized calcium?  Some people have a condition called Wolff-Parkinson-White disorder (WPW), an accessory electrical pathway in the heart (that shouldn't be there.)  There is a very distinctive pattern on ECG that identifies the disorder.  If that is ruled out, there is research out there that both conditions you mention -- lupus and  Vit D deficiency -- can cause heart trouble.  

Some people cannot metabolize Vit D due to digestive disorders.  

Aug 2009  Lupus and Vit D
http://omrf.org/OMRF/News_Releases/Releases/2009/20090804.asp

www.vitamindcouncil.org/newsletter/2006-may.shtml
. . .Dr. Hardin, from Columbia University, presented evidence that blood levels above 50 ng/mL should help patients with lupus. . .

Search "Lupus and Vit D" or "Lupus and Vit D deficiency" and see what you find!  Again, I would highly recommend reading Dr. Holick's New England Journal of Medicine article available on his website, www.vitamindhealth.org.  Or google his name "Dr. Michael F Holick" -- there is a lot to read related to his research as well as the research of others.  I read that in 1971, it was Dr. Holick that identified the test now used to diagnose Vit D deficiency.

Best wishes to you in your quest!
Avatar universal
Good news that your Vit D deficiency was diagnosed.  I hope you are taking the 50,000iu for 8 weeks.  Often it is also prescribed to take every other week for a few weeks and then start the daily dose.  2,000 iu or more is what many people are told to take.  Did you find out the number?  How low your level was?  If it was much below 30, your calcium was likely not being absorbed because Vit D must be intact to activate calcium, therefore many people end up calcium deficient.  If your doc does a serum test to check your calcium, it will appear in the "normal" range because it is being leached from your bones and teeth so that your heart and other vital organs can function.  ionized calcium is what must be measured.   If it is low, take calcium citrate, not calcium carbonate.  The vitamin D council newsletter reports that there were so many new research projects on Vit D at this year's annual meeting, that they could only select about 300 to be presented.  If you're interested, you can read a summary by Dr. Cannell, the Council director:  www.vitamindcouncil.com  Be patient as your Vit D is repleted.  It takes time to feel better and it is gradual.  You may not notice a sudden improvement even when you finish the Rx Vit D.  It is very important to take the daily dose and get in the sun for 15 minutes (cover your face) with 25% of your body uncovered whenever you can.  If you live above Atlanta, Georgia, you won't be able to make Vit D from the sun until sometime after February -- it is impossible at that latitude.  (See Dr. Holick's NEJM article)  The evidence is good that the therapy you are taking will work!    
Avatar universal
To learn a lot about Vit D deficiency symptoms from one of the world's top Vit D scientists, go to www.vitamindhealth.org.  Under External Links, click on the ECTS link -- a video presentation (very entertaining, by the way).  Also at the same site, click on Original Journal Articles for the New England Journal of Medicine articles.  The old bottom number was 30 -- the current scientists use 50, therefore, a level of 11 is quite low and with Vit D not working, one's calcium would also be off.  If 50,000 iu remains a problem after trying it the 2nd week -- you're only taking it once a week, right?  -- then try getting over the counter 2,000iu and taking about 6,000 iu each day (after discussing with your doc.)  Also, lots of info at www.vitamindcouncil.com.  Both sites have info about diabetes and Vit D deficiency.  Good luck!  minmtn
1156694 tn?1265213626
I just started the 50,000IU weekly of Vitamin D, I have 12 weeks worth.  Boy did it make me nauseated.  I did find out that my level was 11.  They haven't done any other testing, but I might see if my PCP will do an Ionized calcium level.  I have an appointment with an endocrinologist in March. (I was diagnosed with Diabetes 3 or 4 years ago and now with the vitamin deficiencies the PCP wants to pass me off.)  I have been reading through the Vitamin D council's website.  I am still overwhelmed and hopefully if I keep reading, things will begin to make sense.  Thanks for commenting.
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