The Endocrine Society unveiled its latest guideline, “Vitamin D for the Prevention of Disease,” on June 3rd, 2024. This evidence-based guideline aims to establish clinical guidelines for the use of vitamin D to lower the risk of disease in individuals without established indications for vitamin D treatment or 25(OH)D testing.

Recognized for its vital role in bone mineralization and maintaining bone health, this guideline underscores the multisystem involvement that vitamin D has within the body. Deficiencies in vitamin D can potentially affect musculoskeletal, metabolic, cardiovascular, malignant, autoimmune, and infectious disease processes.

With easy access to vitamin D, low risk of adverse events for patients without known risk factors, and the potential risk reduction for patients receiving empiric treatment, these guidelines offer clinical decision support for the use of vitamin D in patients without known underlying vitamin D-related pathophysiologies.

In this discussion, we will explore the key takeaways and insights surrounding the guideline’s recommendations for empiric vitamin D supplementation. Please note that this list does not encompass all major points. For a complete list of recommendations, refer to the full text guideline located here or the pocket guide provided here.

2024 Endocrine Society Vitamin D Supplementation Guidelines – Key Takeaways:

The panel notes that vitamin D supplementation is considered safe when taken according to the guidelines set forth by the Institute of Medicine’s Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs). In addition to its safety profile, vitamin D is cost-effective, widely accessible, well-tolerated by patients, and simple to incorporate into daily routines. However, maintaining adherence to a vitamin D supplementation regimen may prove challenging, as it often requires lifelong commitment.

The guideline recommends that the following individuals may benefit from vitamin D supplementation:

  • Children and Teens aged 1 to 18 years:
    • Vitamin D supplementation is advised to prevent nutritional rickets and potentially lower the risk of respiratory tract infections.
  • Pregnant women:
    • Vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy is recommended due to its potential to lower the risk of preeclampsia, intrauterine mortality, preterm birth, small-for-gestational-age birth, and neonatal mortality.
  • Adults aged 75 years and older:
    • Empiric vitamin D supplementation is suggested as it has the potential to lower the risk of mortality.
  • Adults with high-risk prediabetes:
    •  In addition to lifestyle modification, empiric vitamin D supplementation is recommended to reduce the risk of progression to diabetes.

Interestingly, the panel recommends against routine screening for 25(OH)D levels in adults with dark complexions . Despite skin pigmentation in research, there have been no randomized clinical trials specifically evaluating vitamin D-related outcomes based on participants’ skin pigmentation. A secondary analysis did not definitively demonstrate a clear advantage with vitamin D in individuals who identify as Black. The panel acknowledges that self-identified race is an unreliable and potentially problematic substitute for dark complexion. 

Furthermore, the panel advises against routine screening for adults with obesity. Clinical trials have not established 25(OH)D thresholds that provide outcome-specific benefits in adults with obesity.

Thank you for joining us for our Guidelines Spotlight on “Vitamin D for the Prevention of Disease.” Please feel free to share your thoughts with us. We look forward to bringing you our next spotlight soon!

Sign up for alerts and stay informed on the latest published guidelines and articles.

Copyright © 2024 Guideline Central, all rights reserved.