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D deficiency among pregnant women in urban obstetric practice

Posted on: October 26, 2012   by  John Cannell, MD


If you read our news section, you saw the Spanish study from the journal Pediatrics showing low vitamin D levels in pregnancy are associated with worse infant cognitive function at age 14 months, despite the women taking a prenatal vitamin containing 600 IU of vitamin D. The researchers found that levels of 30 ng/ml and higher are associated with better cognitive function than levels of 20 ng/ml and lower.

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5 Responses to D deficiency among pregnant women in urban obstetric practice

  1. [email protected]

    I am wondering if anyone has experience of using the ZRT Lab testing kit on animals. I am involved with housed dairy cows in the tropics which receive very little sunlight.

  2. Ian

    Are the hospital pharmaceutical purchasing officers getting a kick-back for purchasing the ergocalciferol? I would have thought the researchers (authors) would be insisting on cholecalciferol.

  3. kenmerrimanmd

    always learning something new

    most people seem to believe that D2 & D3 are equivalent I certainly did

    it seems that this is not so from what is stated above

    lots of docs rx D2 50,000 as it is easy and some ins cos pay for it although I am told that Medicaid in Mich does not anymore

    sooo probably the docs doing the study have no idea that D2 could be damaging

    probably many more are afraid of giving too much Vit d of any kind as toxicity is still a pretty big boogie man at least around here

  4. Ron Carmichael

    As a former hospital pharmacist for a number of years, with duties including purchasing and contract bidding, I can speak only for myself: There is no such mechanism for a kick-back from manufacturers in hospital practice AFAIK, and the revenue from buying vitamin D2 (essentially only 1 or 2 mfrs in the US market) is extremely low anyway. (Let’s talk some name brand products if you want conspiracy theories about pricing).

    It is my belief as an RPh that the primary cause for *any* physician to write for D2 and to prefer it in studies, is that when the Dr. wants to reference “what to prescribe”, as a standard of professional practice she/he has been taught to rely on, reach for, the Physician’s Desk Reference (PDR) and lo, there only is found one D product, D2. NO CHOLECALCIFEROL.

    So in a mistaken notion of “it’s in the PDR, so it is not only safe and effective, but it is the best”, the Dr. prescribes D2. I think as more people who set protocols for studies are better educated as t0 the “natural” component of vitamin D levels (ie, people are exposed to daily doses of sun/vitamin D3, rather than ridiculous doses every so often). we will begin to see better designed studies and FAR better, more reliable and “actionable” conclusions…

    Once explained properly to the physician, I have found somewhat to my surprise, an amazing number of practitioners respond positively, open to the switch to D3, including increasing dosing to 5,000iu/day (to 10,000iu/day in obese or large or bedridden (ie, nursing home) patients. Not all, mind you, but above average numbers.

  5. ljacob

    My daughter was tested during her pregnancy and her Vit D level was 11. Now her son is 2 years old and he won’t talk. He gets very irritable and cries alot. When he was born he suffered with colic for about 3 or 4 months. Is there anything I can do for him? My daughter is African American.

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