Vitamin D and Calcium Supplementation to Prevent Fractures in Adults

by Sabrina I. Pacifici on May 9, 2013

Vitamin D and Calcium Supplementation to Prevent Fractures in Adults: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force Recommendation Statement

  • “Vitamin D and calcium are known to be important for strong, healthy bones. Both come from certain foods, and vitamin D is also produced in the body after exposure to sunlight. However, many Americans have lower intake or levels of these substances than recommended. This is concerning because low vitamin D and calcium levels put people at risk for osteoporosis and bone fractures. Fractures, especially hip fractures, are associated with pain, disability, loss of independence, and death. For that reason, many people take vitamin D and calcium supplements with the hope of preventing fractures. However, although vitamin D and calcium supplements are helpful for adults known to have osteoporosis, whether they are helpful in adults who do not have osteoporosis is not clear. It is important to note that the risk for osteoporosis and fractures is higher in women after menopause than in premenopausal women. This means that the same recommendations might not apply to both groups of women.”
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