Low vitamin d and wondering about calcium/ parathyroid test please?

Hi, I posted a question a few days ago about blood tests, but have been researching a bit more and have a couple more questions if anyone can help please?

My vitamin d result (nhs pin prick) is 28.8nmol/l and I'm about to contact doc with results, but am unsure about whether there is more than one type of calcium test, or if I ask for electrolytes is this correct please? Also, I've read that there can be 2 reasons vitamin d is low, not taking in enough and a problem with a parathyroid gland. Has anyone requested both calcium and parathyroid test, or is it a case of having the first and if there is a prob, being offered the second?

I had a hair test a while ago and calcium was the only mineral to be normal and the rest all read very low, so am concerned about taking the vitamin d until I get it sorted.

Many thanks again...

12 Replies

Jo5454, Unless you've had thyroid surgery it is very unlikely that you will have hypoparathyroidism which causes low calcium and low vitD. A calcium profile blood test will check whether calcium is low.

Vit D 28.8 is low and you will need around 5,000iu vitD3 daily for 6/8 weeks after which 5,000iu alternate days should be sufficient.

Thanks very much for your reply. That's reassuring, I'm contacting doc next week to inform about my results and will ask for a profile calcium test. Thanks also for telling me an amount to take. Can I ask if you recommend any particular brand please and whether it is quite quick to get levels up? I'm supplementing iron at the mo and understand it can take quite a while to get ferritin up. Also, is it okay to take the iron and vitamin d together? Many thanks, Jo

Jo, Softgel capsules are better than tablets. I had vitD deficiency and was prescribed loading and maintenance doses for 8 weeks which got my levels up. I'm not sure how long it will take on 5,000iu, 3-6 months I imagine. I'm currently using Doctor's Best but previously used Now which were also good.

I'm not sure whether or not it is okay to take iron and vitD together at the same time but it is okay to supplement both. VitD is best taken with the fattiest meal of the day to aid absorption and iron should be taken with 500mg to 1,000mg vitamin C to aid absorption.

Thank you once again Clutter. I've got to be tested via docs now, so can't start supplements quite yet, will bear all this in mind thanks. Have started taking the vitamin c, although it seems to be aggravating stomache a bit. Have had a virusy thing for couple of weeks, so it may settle down, will keep going with it...p.s were you prescribed the soft gel type or did you have to find those yourself?

Jo, I was prescribed 40,000iu ProD3 softgel caps for a week and 2,000iu for 8 weeks.

If vitC is making your bowels loose 1/2 the dose for a week and then build up to full dose. There are different types available. Ascorbic acid powder stirred into water won't have the additives tablets have and may suit you better.

Thank you, wow 40,000 sounds high, can I ask what your blood test result was? Most people seem to have trouble going to the loo on iron, but I'm finding it quite the opposite! Yes, That's a good idea trying a powder, I've been starting with a quarter 1000 mg tablet, but maybe powder would suit me better...

Jo, it was <10. My sister's vitD was 40 and she was prescribed 20,000iu x 2 per week.

VitC has a loosening effect which is why it is recommended with iron plus it increases absorption of iron. You can build a tolerance to it which is why I suggested halving dose for a week.

Hi First you need a test for calcium, it is the corrected calcium that counts.Then if it is above range. You need a test for PTH, Vit D and calcium all done together am. If any are above range then you need a nuclear scan for the PTH( parathyroid)


Thanks very much for your reply Jackie, that's really helpful to know. I'll know to look at the corrected calcium. Is the calcium test best done as a fasting one please? Many thanks, Jo

HI No need, it is a simple test.It Is important to have anyway if taking D as calcium must not go over range and if below range to take D you need calcium too.


Thanks again Jackie. I asked about having a calcium test and have it booked in for next week and they also want to do a vitamin d, to double check. I've got to have ferritin redone as first 3 month check is round. I looked on net and it says not to eat for 4 hours prior to vit d and I fasted overnight for ferritin before, so guess this won't affect calcium...Jo

HI I have never done this. I find just beta Blockers and thyroid meds affect the bloods.Aks for iron and B|12 too if due.


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