News

UK experts release new clinical guidelines for treating vitamin D deficiency

May 6, 2013

The UK National Osteoporosis Society has developed new clinical guidelines for the management of vitamin D deficiency due to a lack of national recommendations on the indications for vitamin D measurements and conflicting guidelines from various organizations.

The group of clinicians and scientists, with expertise in vitamin D and osteoporosis, recommends that patients with tested 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 blood concentrations under 50 nmol/l (20 ng/ml) should be treated for vitamin D deficiency (1). For severe deficiency or urgent situations, they recommend treatment with loading doses, for less urgent deficiencies they recommend using daily dosing. For example, the guidelines suggest a loading dose of either 50,000 IU per week or 20,000 IU twice weekly for urgent deficiencies. For less urgent deficiencies, doses ranging from 800 IU to 2,000 IU per day, or even in some cases, as high as 4,000 IU per day are recommended. For all options, the experts recommend the use of vitamin D3.

The experts commented that pressure was mounting from clinicians to develop guidance that covers the investigation, diagnosis and treatment of vitamin D deficiency. This, coupled with growing public awareness and interest in vitamin D, encouraged them to provide guidance for healthcare professionals across the UK.

References

  1. National Osteoporosis Society. Vitamin D and Bone Health: A Practical Clinical Guideline for Patient Management. http://www.nos.org.uk, 2013.