Vitamin D is actually not a vitamin but a hormone that is produced in the body as a result of sun exposure. It can also be obtained from certain foods.
The importance of vitamin D
This hormone absorbs calcium from food in the digestive system and into the body. Therefore, its deficiency may lead to a decrease in the absorption of calcium from food. As a result, calcium is released from the bones with the goal of maintaining a stable level of calcium in the blood.
This results in bone injuries (rickets in children – Rickets or osteoporosis in adults), muscle damage and high blood pressure.
There is also research confirming the existence of a relationship between low levels of vitamin D and diabetes, autoimmune diseases (in which the immune system attacks the body, such as lupus – SLE), and certain types of cancerous tumors.
Vitamin D deficiency is a very common condition among adults and children alike. The issue appears to stem from a lack of exposure to the sun and the large use of sunscreen in recent years, following increased awareness of the health risks associated with increased exposure to the sun, such as an increased risk of skin cancer.
Vitamin D surplus is a condition so rare that large amounts of consumption are required. This excess causes in extreme cases high blood pressure, weakness, high calcium in the blood, the emergence of kidney stones and decreased ability to concentrate.
Vitamin D test actually examines the level of one of its products, 25-hydroxy-vitamin (D25-OH – Vitamin D).
Vitamin D test results
- Low: Less than 15 nanograms per liter (37nmol per liter) Today, vitamin D deficiency is considered a result of:
- Insufficient consumption of vitamin D: Vitamin D is found in certain types of fish, shiitake fungi, egg white (negligible amount), and products that are artificially added vitamin D. In most additive milk products, there is no vitamin D. When needed, vitamin D can be supplemented with commercial preparations. The recommended consumption is 400 units per day, and in the event of a shortage or pregnancy, 800 to 1000 units can be consumed.
- Insufficient exposure to sunlight: It is common in children, people who work in closed places, and people who wear long clothes throughout the year for religious reasons. Also, people with dark skin who use a protection product may also be exposed to not absorbing enough amounts of sunlight to produce Vitamin D. There is no medical recommendation to be exposed to the sun more than necessary or not to use a protection product, for fear of skin cancer. If you have vitamin D deficiency, you can moderate sun exposure, for a period of several minutes a day, in safe hours.
- Problems absorbing vitamin D: caused by digestive problems.
- In adults, due to the reduced ability of the kidneys to convert vitamin D to the active ingredient.
- Articular level: between 15 nanograms per liter (37 nanometers per liter) and 25 nanograms per liter (62 nanometers per liter) is considered a joint condition?
- Good level: above 25 nanograms per liter (67 nanometers per liter) is good for most people, but there is a prevailing view that people in certain risk groups such as pregnant women, the elderly, people with kidney problems and children with a family history of Crohn’s disease, Diabetes or rheumatoid disease, it is preferable to maintain a degree above 30 50 ng / L (74 123 Nmol / L).
- Excess level: above 150 ng per liter (370 nmol per liter) is considered a vitamin D surplus, but this limit is different, and there are those who believe that the value should be greater. The level of vitamin D in the blood can be high due to diseases that produce granulomas (tuberculosis), tuberculosis, sarcoidosis, and hyperthyroidism.
There is no risk in this test except for the risks involved in a regular blood test.
- Vitamin D deficiency
- Vitamin D surplus
- High level of calcium in the blood (Hypercalcemia)
- Kidney stones
When should the examination be done?
- In adults with osteoporosis (a disease that appears to decrease bone density), high blood pressure or kidney injury.
- When in doubt about hyperthyroidism (tuberculosis), tuberculosis, or sarcoidosis.
- In children with suspicion of rickets (this disease appears as growth retardation and bone deformation)
- As a screening test for vitamin D deficiency in adults, children and pregnant women.
Method of conducting the examination
This is a regular blood test.
No special recommendations.
How should I prepare for the examination?
No need to prepare.