Web Results
Content Results
  • Vitamin D deficiency


    Vitamin D deficiency, or hypovitaminosis D, most commonly results from inadequate sunlight exposure (in particular sunlight with adequate ultraviolet B rays). Vitamin D deficiency can also be caused by inadequate nutritional intake of vitamin D, disorders limiting vitamin D absorption, and conditions impairing vitamin D conversion into active metabolites—including certain liver, kidney, and hereditary disorders. Deficiency impairs bone mineralization, leading to bone softening diseases such as rickets in children. It can also worsen osteomalacia and osteoporosis in adults, leading to an increased risk of bone fractures. Muscle weakness is also a common symptom of vitamin D deficiency, further increasing the risk of fall and bone fractures in adults. Ultraviolet B rays from sunlight is a large source of vitamin D. Fatty fish such as salmon, herring, and mackerel are also sources of vitamin D. Milk is often fortified with vitamin D and sometimes bread, juices, and other dairy products are fortified with vitamin D as well. Many multivitamins now contain vitamin D in different amounts.

  • Vitamin D


    Vitamin D is a group of fat-soluble secosteroids responsible for increasing intestinal absorption of calcium, magnesium, and phosphate, and multiple other biological effects. In humans, the most important compounds in this group are vitamin D3 (also known as cholecalciferol) and vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol). Cholecalciferol and ergocalciferol can be ingested from the diet and from supplements. Only a few foods contain vitamin D. The major natural source of the vitamin is synthesis of cholecalciferol in the skin from cholesterol through a chemical reaction that is dependent on sun exposure (specifically UVB radiation). Dietary recommendations typically assume that all of a person's vitamin D is taken by mouth, as sun exposure in the population is variable and recommendations about the amount of sun exposure that is safe are uncertain in view of the skin cancer risk. Vitamin D from the diet or skin synthesis is biologically inactive; enzymatic conversion (hydroxylation) in the liver and kidney is required for activation.

  • Cholecalciferol


    Cholecalciferol, also known as vitamin D3 and colecalciferol, is a type of vitamin D which is made by the skin when exposed to sunlight, it also found in some foods and can be taken as a dietary supplement. It is used to treat and prevent vitamin D deficiency and associated diseases, including rickets. It is also used for familial hypophosphatemia, hypoparathyroidism that is causing low blood calcium, and Fanconi syndrome. It is usually taken by mouth. Excessive doses can result in vomiting, constipation, weakness, and confusion. Other risks include kidney stones. Normal doses are safe in pregnancy. It may not be effective in people with severe kidney disease. Cholecalciferol is made in the skin following UVB light exposure. It is converted in the liver to calcifediol (25-hydroxyvitamin D) which is then converted in the kidney to calcitriol (1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D). One of its actions is to increase the uptake of calcium by the intestines. It is found in food such as some fish, cheese, and eggs. Certain foods such as milk have cholecalciferol added to them in some countries. Cholecalciferol was first described in 1936. It is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system. Cholecalciferol is available as a generic medication and over the counter.

Map Box 1