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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Vitamin D Regulation, Clinical Significance and Treatment (by ASCLS). Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Causes of Vitamin D Deficiency

1.Decreased vitamin D synthesis

A. People with darker skin tend to release less D­3from the skin

B. Excessive use of UV skin blockers.
C. Latitude – it has been suggested that the farther away from the equator, the lower the 25(OH)D – this has been disputed (Hagenau, et. al., Osteoporosis Int, 20; 133-140, 2009)

D. There is a seasonal change in 25(OH)D farther away from equator with the peak in the summer and nadir in the winter.

2. Decreased nutritional intake of vitamin D

3. Infants can have low vitamin D status if the mother is vitamin D deficient and the infant is not taking vitamin supplements.

4. GI malabsorption

5. Significant liver disease (e.g. cirrhosis) can decrease conversion of Vitamin D to 25(OH)D

(Source of some of this information - From PEDIATRICS Vol. 122 No. 2 August 2008, pp. 398-417)