A predictive equation to guide vitamin D replacement dose in patients

Gurmukh Singh, Aaron J. Bonham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Vitamin D is essential for bone health and probably the health of most nonskeletal tissues. Vitamin D deficiency is widespread, and recommended doses are usually inadequate to maintain healthy levels. We conducted a retrospective observational study to determine whether the recommended doses of vitamin D are adequate to correct deficiency and maintain normal levels in a population seeking health care. We also sought to develop a predictive equation for replacement doses of vitamin D. Methods: We reviewed the response to vitamin D supplementation in 1327 patients and 3885 episodes of vitamin D replacement and attempted to discern factors affecting the response to vitamin D replacement by conducting multiple regression analyses. Results: For the whole population, average daily dose resulting in any increase in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D level was 4707 IU/day; corresponding values for ambulatory and nursing home patients were 4229 and 6103 IU/day, respectively. Significant factors affecting the change in serum concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D, in addition to the dose administered, are (1) starting serum concentration of 25-hydroxyvitamin D, (2) body mass index (BMI), (3) age, and (f) serum albumin concentration. The following equation predicts the dose of vitamin D needed (in international units per day) to affect a given change in serum concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D: Dose = [(8.52 - Desired change in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D level) + (0.074 x Age) - (0.20 x BMI) + (1.74 x Albumin concentration) - (0.62 x Starting serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration)]/(-0.002). Analysis of the dose responses among 3 racial groups - white, black, and others - did not reveal clinically meaningful differences between the races. The main limitation of the study is its retrospective observational nature; however, that is also its strength in that we assessed the circumstances seen in usual health care setting. Conclusions: The recommended daily allowance for vitamin D is grossly inadequate for correcting low serum concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in many adult patients. About 5000 IU vitamin D3/day is usually needed to correct deficiency, and the maintenance dose should be ≥2000 IU/day. The required dose may be calculated from the predictive equations specific for ambulatory and nursing home patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)495-509
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of the American Board of Family Medicine
Volume27
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Ambulatory care
  • Community medicine
  • Drug dosage calculations
  • Laboratories
  • Nursing homes
  • Osteoporosis
  • Primary health care
  • Vitamin D

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Family Practice

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