Vitamin D deficiency remains prevalent despite increased laboratory testing in New South Wales, Australia.
Singapore Med J. 2014 May;55(5):271-80.
Quaggiotto P1, Tran H, Bhanugopan M.
The aim of the present study was to assess the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and toxicity, the frequency of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) testing, and 25(OH)D variations with respect to patient gender, patient age and season in New South Wales, Australia.
A retrospective analysis of pathology records was performed to ascertain patient age, patient gender, sample collection date, plasma or serum 25(OH)D levels, calcium and parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels, and test numbers between 2001 and 2010. Linear regression with Bonferroni correction was used to calculate and compare age-adjusted mean 25(OH)D levels. Relationships of 25(OH)D with PTH and calcium were tested using Spearman's rank correlation.
25(OH)D testing increased by 730% over the ten-year study period. In 2010, many men (33%) and women (40%) were, to some degree, vitamin D deficient (≤ 50 nmol/L). Vitamin D toxicity was rare, with only one instance noted. 25(OH)D levels correlated positively with calcium and negatively with PTH levels. 25(OH)D levels decreased with age. In 2010, 25(OH)D levels were highest in February and lowest in September/October. Cyclical variation was observed for 25(OH)D levels between 2006 and 2010.
We found that vitamin D deficiency was prevalent in both men and women, with a higher prevalence in the latter, despite the substantial increased demand for 25(OH)D testing in our population over the decade. Vitamin D deficiency was associated with elevated PTH levels. Vitamin D toxicity was rare and only observed once during our study period. 25(OH)D levels decreased with age and varied with season, with the highest levels observed in late summer and the lowest in early spring.
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The rest of the world had DECREASING levels of vitamin D during the decade
A little story about Australians and increased vitamin D levels
For decades Australians had been told that sunshine was deadly.
They avoided the sun, and some even used sunscreen 24 hours a day, during all seasons.
Then they noticed a big increase in a great many diseases.
The public thought that these increases might be due to low vitamin D from lack of sun.
The doctors said no, could not be, and the government would not even allow selling capsules containing more than 1000 IU
The public asked for vitamin D tests (about a 100X increase in 11 years)
The government then refused to pay for any more (unnecessary) vitamin D tests.
That did not stop the public - they took matter into their own hands.
Australia is the only country which has shown a recent INCREASE in vitamin D levels
- VA showed increased vitamin D associated with lower health costs - Lancet May 2012
- Vitamin D testing in Australia before they shut it down – 42 percent retested – 2013
- UVB Global average radiation (Australia is not highlighted)
- 20X increase in vitamin D sold and 36 percent decrease in osteoporosis business in Australia – Nov 2013
- Nutrition authorities in Aust and NZ ignoring vitamin D deficiency - July 2012
- Diabetes, hyperglycemia, depression, poor balance, etc associated with less than 20 ng of vitamin D in seniors – Feb 2014 New South Wales
- Vitamin D levels continue to fall: Canada 6 percent drop from 2009 to 2011 – Feb 2013 has the following