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Recommended vitamin D levels not sufficient for preventing falls in older women

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Recommended vitamin D levels not sufficient for preventing falls in older women

Recommended Vitamin D levels not beneficial in preventing falls in older women. 

Falls are a major public health problem in the ageing population because they lead to fractures and other injuries. Vitamin D, due to its positive effects on muscle strength and balance was proposed as a strategy to reduce falls. A new study, however, has found that maintaining levels of Vitamin D (serum 25(OH)D) above 30 ng/mL as suggested by the Endocrine Society guidelines do not provide protection against falls in healthy older black American women.

The study is published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 

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There is limited data on the influence of vitamin D on falls in older high-functioning black American women. John F. Aloia, NYU Winthrop Hospital, Mineola, New York, and colleagues conducted the study to determine if maintenance of serum 25(OH)D above 30 ng/mL protects against falls.

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Participants in this African American Women trial included healthy black women older than 60 years of age with serum 25(OH)D levels between 8 and 26 ng/mL. Every three years, the participants were assessed every three months for 3 years. A total of 260 women entered the study, and 184 completed the 3 years. Mean age was 68.2 years.

The trial consisted of two arms: one with placebo and one with vitamin D3 adjusted to maintain serum 25(OH)D above 30 ng/mL. The primary outcomes were the prevention of bone loss and the decline in physical performance. Baseline 25(OH)D was 22 ng/mL.

Also Read: Vitamin D supplementation not recommended to prevent falls,fractures : JAMA

Key findings of the study include:

  • Mean serum 25(OH)D reached 47 ng/mL in the active group compared with 21 ng/mL in the placebo group.
  • There were 14.2% falls in the previous year recalled at baseline.
  • During the study, 46% reported falling in the treatment group compared with 47% in the placebo group.
  • There was no association of serum 25(OH)D or vitamin D dose with the risk of falling.

Also Read: Trazadone linked to risk of falls in elderly with dementia

“In conclusion, we have shown that in older black women raising serum Vitamin D (25(OH)D) above the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is not beneficial in preventing falls. We believe the American Geriatrics Society and the Endocrine Society should revisit their recommendations concerning high vitamin D intake for the prevention of falls,” write the authors.

For detailed study follow the link: https://doi.org/10.1111/jgs.15760




Source: With inputs from Journal of the American Geriatrics Society

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  1. user
    Helen J Duyvestyn May 11, 2019, 12:13 pm

    Aren\’t we concerned about fractures rather than falls per se? At least when it comes to the benefits of vitamin D?

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