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My GP told me my vitamin D was very low, and he prescribed 800iu vitamin d3 to take daily for 3 months. After 3 months the vitamin d level had not gone up, so he said to keep taking the tablets and have another blood test 3 months after that. This has now been going on for about 4 years! Every few months they request another blood test and the level is still the same. At first he said it was ‘odd’ and then after I brought it up a second time he said he didn’t think I was being honest about taking the tablets every day, which is annoying because I’m desperate to get it back to normal and feel well again so I take them every day without fail! I live in the UK so we don’t really get any sun in the winter, but last summer I literally BAKED myself all day every time the sun was out in an effort to get the level to go up – but it didn’t. I am taking a magnesium supplement daily as well. I also tried taking a higher dose of vitamin D (2000iu daily) for 3 months and that didn’t make a difference either. I also tried taking it as an under-the-tongue spray instead of capsules to see if it was a problem with my stomach not absorbing it properly, but still no luck. I had a blood test last week and they said it still hasn’t gone up, so again he just prescribed more of the 800iu tablets and said to have another test in 3 months. I don’t know what to do – surely it should have gone up a bit by now? Could there be a medical reason why it would still be so low? Or am I just not taking a high enough dose? My doctors don’t seem to be taking it seriously. Any advice would be massively appreciated!

Asked by  Anon on February 9, 2017

  •  Anon on

    See title

    Answered by  Anon on
  •  IAW on

    It would have helped if you could have posted just what your level is. If it is 10ng/ml(25nmol/l)or less, this could mean Osteomalacia (adult rickets). If this is the case, you will never raise your levels on the small amount they tell you to take and the doctor should really know better. Even if your level is not that low, you still will not be able to raise your levels with that small of an amount.
    So without more information, like symptoms you have, I would suggest taking a minimum amount of 5000iu a day but you can take up to 10,000iu a day which is the “official” safe upper limit.
    Weight also plays a part in how much Vitamin D to take. Those amounts above are based on 150lbs so if you weigh a lot more than that, tell me. (You may seriously want to consider the 10,000iu for 3 months and if levels rise than 5000iu a day to maintain.) We here at the VDC recommend maintaining a “healthy”level of 50ng/ml (125nmol/l). Too many studies show that with levels below 40ng/ml and your risk for cancer and autoimmune diseases increases dramatically.
    You also said “I literally BAKED myself all day every time the sun was out in an effort to get the level to go up – but it didn’t.” Again if your level is extremely low and you could not get sun “everyday”, it may not have been enough. Getting enough from sunshine depends on time of day you are out there which should be 10-2pm, with very little clothing on (large amounts of skin exposed), what color your skin is and the obvious no sunblock use.
    If you have more questions, please ask. If you take somewhere between 5-10,000iu for 2-3 months and levels do not “budge”, come back and tell me.

    Answered by  IAW on
    •  Anon on

      Hi, thanks so much for your reply. The doctor said my level was 22 but didn’t specify whether that was ng or nmol so I guess that’s not much help. And I weigh about 90lbs – does this mean 10,000iu would not be safe? Thanks

      Answered by  Anon on
  •  IAW on

    The UK measures in nmol/l, so your level is really low at 8.8ng/ml. When someone is that low standard protocol is to give them either 50,000iu once a week or you can take 7-8000iu a day. It is better for you to take Vitamin D daily. If you do not get a lot of calcium in your diet, you may want to supplement for a while.
    Since you weigh 90lbs, let’s err on the side of caution and take 7-8000iu a day. I would do that for 2-3 months then get tested again. If you have reached 125nmol/l (50ng/ml) but your level is not higher than that, then keep taking that amount and come back for further advice. If your level is a lot higher, then drop to a maintenance dosage of 5000iu per day. If per chance you still have symptoms, then come back for more advice at that point before decreasing the dosage.
    If you get any new symptoms, come back and tell me right away. It usually means a mineral deficiency.
    Let me know if you have any more questions!

    Answered by  IAW on

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