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Topic: Get Blood Levels Checked For Vitamin D levels

Forum: Bone Health and Bone Loss —

Talk with others about bone density, osteopenia and osteoporosis, and ways to keep your bones strong

Posted on: Apr 12, 2013 11:01PM

cinnamonsmiles wrote:

A  year ago, I went to see a neurologist who was horrible. My family doctor had repeated some of his information to me so I got all the labs and doctor's notes from him. It stated at my last appointment in April 2012 that he told my vitaimin D levels were low and that he put me on supplement. HE NEVER TOLD ME AND NEVER HAD ME ON A SUPPLEMENT. I didn't find this out til January 2013 when I got the medical records from him. My vitamin D level ran by that clinic reported a value of 6 for me which is extremely low. Normal range reported from my primary doctor's clinic has a normal range of 18-78.

My family doctor ran another battery of lab tests on me. A year later with no Vitamin D supplements ( I did change vitamins for women 50 yrs or older), my Vitamin D levels were 58 and normal.

It is good to take Vitamins and supplements, but we really need to get our blood levels checked periodically. I had been taking a Vitamin E supplement after my BMX. But found on my blood work that the levels were to high and that it isn't good for me with my other health conditions.

I just thought I would remind us that we need to get blood work done to check the levels so they aren't too high.

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Apr 20, 2013 04:59PM CjPA wrote:

Always good to check your labs numbers on supplements that can be tested.  My ONC would tell you your Vit D level is still too low.  Like you are started out with a Vit D level at 6 ( I'm a redhead and use sun screen by the gallons).  Normal low Vit D ranges now start at 30.  My ONC recommends Vit D levels to be 60 or higher and perfers 75 to 80 range for womwn that have had breast cancer.

Dx 5/13/2009, LCIS, 5cm, Stage II, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 8/15/2009 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 12/20/2009 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 2/15/2010 Femara (letrozole)
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May 16, 2013 12:36PM MaineCoonKitty wrote:

I just saw my oncologist yesterday for my 6 months check up.  Everything was good, except for my Vitamin D level, which was too low.  She's put me on a 5000 IU per day dosage, which surprised me because the standard safe upper level for dosage is 4000 IU.

Dx 4/27/2009, 6cm+, Grade 3, 0/0 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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May 19, 2013 09:30PM - edited May 19, 2013 09:31PM by KiwiKate

Yes, there is a lot of good info by Cedric Garland on you tube on this topic and how everyone should have vitamin d levels checked regularly and kept within a range to prevent Ca and prevent it coming back.  Seems like grassroots health are doing a massive promotion on this since a recent randomised trial came out and showed 70% less occurence of cancer.  They have started this promotion called d'action. 

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Jun 8, 2013 07:12AM peggy_j wrote:

Does anyone know what the recommended Vit D blood level is for cancer preventation? And for bone health? Can anyone post a link to sources? (I googled but found more recommendations on daily IUs than blood levels).

I had my blood Vit D level tested earlier this year and it was 36. The guidelines say the recommended range is 30-100. I take a total of 1800 Vit D D-3 (between the multi vitamin and the Vit D supplement) so I thought it might be higher. When I saw my ONC she said my level was fine, no need to increase the supplement.

One source I read that taking too much Vit D can increase the calcium level in the blood (leach it from the bones?) in addition to toxicity issues, so I don't want to take more, willy-nilly. thanks for any info, esp. links.

Dx 2/2011, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 8, 2013 09:42AM SpecialK wrote:

Here is some info.  My MO checked my D level right after chemo (it was in the teens) and advised supplementation.  My level has steadily climbed and is now in the normal range but I would like it to be higher than it is so I have continued to supplement.  I will have it tested again prior to my regular appt. with him next week.  The attached article says it should be over 70 if you are a BC survivor.

http://www.breastcancerchoices.org/vitd3.html

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 15 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 6/18/13-present. Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3 Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC)
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Jun 8, 2013 09:58AM - edited Jun 8, 2013 10:01AM by ananda8

Right after surgery, my Vitamin D levels were 22.  I spent a year on the "little green D2 pill" and my levels barely moved.  When my doctor told me to try over the counter D3, my levels reached 40 in less than 90 days.  I now take 4000+ units a day and my levels are around 57. 

Great news about D lowering recurrence rates.

“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”
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Jun 8, 2013 05:39PM peggy_j wrote:

Thanks SpecialK. I saw this line on the website: 

Scientists from the Vitamin D Conferences recommend blood Vitamin D levels in the 70-85 range.

Do you know what Conference they are talking about or any info on the source of their data? (I googled and nothing was obvious). I'm hoping to find some white papers on PubMed to understand the science behind it. (i.e. sometimes studies have a lot of patients; some don't; sometimes they look at post-meno women and I'm still pre-meno, etc). 

Dx 2/2011, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 8, 2013 05:50PM grayeyes wrote:

My vitamin D level was 12 after chemo.  So, my oncologist prescribed prescription-strength Vitamin D.  I took only one pill per week, and that pill was a crazy amount of Vitamin D - something like 50,000 - in one pill.  I forget how high my D-level eventually rose; I think it reached the 70's.  At that point, I was told to take over-the-counter Vitamin D, and my D-level fell to the 30's, I think.  I have no idea what my D-level is now.  

I take over-the-counter D3, which I've been hearing is more effective against cancer.  I don't know how true that advice is.  However, prescription Vit-D is always D2.

2011: Left MX w/TE (Ki67: 60%) AC x 4, Taxol x 12, Radiation, Tamoxifen, BRCA2+ Dec. 2012: Right prophylactic MX w/TE, ooph; June 2013: Final exchange; Nov. 2013: Fat grafting; 2014: Arimidex; 2015: Femara REST IN PEACE, MELANIE Dx 11/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 9, 2013 11:55AM SpecialK wrote:

peggy - it appears that the info in that article came from multiple sources, but the Vitamin D Council seems to be the gatherer of info.  Here is some info from their site and it looks like there are some citations at the bottom of the page.  Coincidentally, this organization is based in the small California town where I went to college!

http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/health-conditions/breast-cancer/

BMX w/ TE 11/1/10, ALND 12/6/10. 15 additional surgeries. TCHx6 2/17-6/2/11. Herceptin until 1/19/12. Femara 8/1/11, Arimidex 6/20/12, back to Femara 6/18/13-present. Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3 Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC)
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Jun 10, 2013 04:56AM shinning_like_me wrote:

No no The power of the tablet depends on how low your Vitamin D count is.

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Jun 10, 2013 07:50AM Golden01 wrote:

Thanks for the link to the Vitamin D Council. I love the info on sunlight and Vitamin D. My levels fell on 2,000 IU of D3 per day. Now I take 4,000 IU and get out in the sun and this info has provided more detail. 

Mucinous Carcinoma, Hypercellular Variant; Oncotype DX 27, Dx 7/8/2011, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 7/20/2014 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Jun 10, 2013 10:41AM peggy_j wrote:

SpecialK, thanks a lot for that link. Lots of references there. I plan to do my research and then discuss with my MO at my next appt. Thanks again!

Dx 2/2011, IDC, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 10, 2013 02:55PM mumofone wrote:

Thanks for the links :). I had blood taken last week to check my Vit D level - I will be interested to know the result. When I asked my doctor to do this, she kind of rolled her eyes a bit and mumbled something about it being 'trendy' at the moment!!! I don't think it's as accepted to investigate this here in the UK, at least that's my experience. Perhaps I give her the link to the Vit D Council webpage ;-)

Dx: Mar 2013 / Lumpectomy+Mastectomy: Grade 1 IDC (mucinous) & DCIS, 4.1cm, ER+/PR+ HER2-, 0/3 nodes
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Jun 10, 2013 05:11PM ananda8 wrote:

mumofone,

Perhaps your doctor will be open to an article from PubMed (NIH) from a European doctor.  Here's the link.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23700865



“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”
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Jun 11, 2013 11:38AM mumofone wrote:

notself - thank you, that's a useful link. I'll print it out :).

I'm learning to be bolder in asking for tests and treatments, no matter what my GP thinks. It's my body/health, after all!

I'll pop back in with my result when I get it...

Dx: Mar 2013 / Lumpectomy+Mastectomy: Grade 1 IDC (mucinous) & DCIS, 4.1cm, ER+/PR+ HER2-, 0/3 nodes
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Jun 11, 2013 01:23PM ananda8 wrote:

After showing abstracts from PubMed to my doctor, he now tests every patient over 60.  He told me 70% of them are deficient in Vitamin D!  I love my doctor because he listens to me and we can have a conversation about the pros and cons of any treatment I need or ideas I have.

“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”
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Jun 24, 2013 12:38PM - edited Jun 24, 2013 12:38PM by mumofone

Finally my blood test results came back. I spoke to my doctor's secretary and apparently the results are 'normal' and 'at acceptable levels'. Hmm. I would like to know the numbers but she wouldn't tell me that - guess I have to make an appointment with my doctor. 

notself, I like my doctor (she's a great listener) but she's not as open minded as yours. It would be great to find one who is prepared to step off the well worn track from time to time. You need to hang on to your doctor! :)

Dx: Mar 2013 / Lumpectomy+Mastectomy: Grade 1 IDC (mucinous) & DCIS, 4.1cm, ER+/PR+ HER2-, 0/3 nodes
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Jun 24, 2013 12:53PM ananda8 wrote:

mumofone,

I am surprised the nurse wouldn't give you the numbers over the phone.  It is, after all, your information.  Perhaps you could stop by your doctor's office and pick up a copy of your test results.  I do it whenever I have any tests.  If there is something in the results that I don't understand, then I make an appointment with the doctor to discuss it. 

“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”
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Jun 24, 2013 02:52PM mumofone wrote:

notself, you are right, I need to ask for a copy. Are you in the UK? I've always found doctors aren't forthcoming with actual results but it's important to know the numbers, if only for future reference.

I might be on the low end of the Vit D levels.

Dx: Mar 2013 / Lumpectomy+Mastectomy: Grade 1 IDC (mucinous) & DCIS, 4.1cm, ER+/PR+ HER2-, 0/3 nodes
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Jun 24, 2013 03:23PM ananda8 wrote:

I'm not in the UK.  I'm in Arkansas, USA. 

Here is some information on VitD3 levels. 

The marker for vitamin D status is 25-hydroxyvitamin-D [25(OH)D], a metabolite of vitamin D3. A 25(OH)D level determines whether a person is deficient, sufficient, or toxic in vitamin D. At this time, there is not a consensus in medicine in what blood levels define these categories.

The Vitamin D Council recommends maintaining serum levels of 50 ng/ml (equivalent to 125 nmol/L*), with the following reference ranges:

  • Deficient: 0-40 ng/ml (0-100 nmol/l)
  • Sufficient: 40-80 ng/ml (100-200 nmol/l)
  • High Normal: 80-100 ng/ml (200-250 nmol/l)
  • Undesirable: > 100 ng/ml (> 250 nmol/l)
  • Toxic: > 150 ng/ml (> 375 nmol/l)

(*Note: 25(OH)D levels can also be defined in units of nmol/L. The conversion between the two is [nmol/L]=2.5*[ng/ml])  http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/further-topics/for-health-professionals-position-statement-on-supplementation-blood-levels-and-sun-exposure/

There is going to be conference in the UK next Spring. http://www.qmul.ac.uk/vitamind/

It is important to have suffecient intake of calcium, magnesium and potassium along with Vitamin D in order to prevent osteoporosis.  Check with your doctor on the appropriate supplements if needed.

“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”
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Jun 24, 2013 05:08PM - edited Jun 24, 2013 05:08PM by jacee

Not self...where in Arkansas are you? I'm in Rogers. Just in the last 2 weeks have met 2 ladies on here from Lowell and Harrison! Small world!

My body has cancer, my spirit does not! Dx 4/27/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 3/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 5/4/2009 Prophylactic ovary removal Surgery 6/5/2009 Lymph node removal: Right, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Chemotherapy 7/5/2009 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 1/3/2010 Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy 2/11/2010 Breast, Lymph nodes Surgery 9/8/2010 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap Surgery 10/8/2011 Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction
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Jun 24, 2013 05:20PM ananda8 wrote:

How terrific! I'm in Mountain Home.  It appears that North Arkansas and the Ozarks are well represented.  Summer is here and it's starting to get really warm. Now my only gardening will be moving the sprinkler. 

“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”
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Jun 24, 2013 05:40PM jacee wrote:

Notself.....ok, maybe a get together is in order in the future! PM ing you my ph #. Sorry, didn't mean to derail the thread😉

My body has cancer, my spirit does not! Dx 4/27/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 3/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 5/4/2009 Prophylactic ovary removal Surgery 6/5/2009 Lymph node removal: Right, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Right Chemotherapy 7/5/2009 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 1/3/2010 Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy 2/11/2010 Breast, Lymph nodes Surgery 9/8/2010 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap Surgery 10/8/2011 Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction

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