Review: Vitamin D Does Not Appear to Prevent Fractures, Falls

In pooled analyses, no clinically relevant between-group difference in bone mineral density at any site

THURSDAY, Oct. 11, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Vitamin D supplementation does not prevent fractures or falls or have a clinically meaningful impact on bone mineral density in pooled analyses, according to a review and meta-analysis published online Oct. 4 in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology.

Mark J. Bolland, Ph.D., from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, and colleagues conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to examine the effect of vitamin D supplementation on fractures, falls, and bone density. Data were included from 81 randomized controlled trials with 53,537 participants that compared vitamin D to untreated controls, placebo, or lower-dose vitamin D supplements.

The researchers found that vitamin D had no effect on total fracture (relative risk, 1.00; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.93 to 1.07), hip fracture (relative risk, 1.11; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.97 to 1.26), or falls (relative risk, 0.97; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.93 to 1.02) in pooled analyses. In trials comparing high-dose versus low-dose vitamin D and in trials using doses greater than 800 IU per day, the results were similar. No clinically relevant between-group differences were seen in bone mineral density at any site in pooled analyses (range, −0.16 to 0.76 percent over one to five years).

"There is little justification to use vitamin D supplements to maintain or improve musculoskeletal health. This conclusion should be reflected in clinical guidelines," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to Auckland Bone Density, a company that provides bone mineral density measurements.

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