NMA: Nonprescription Medicines Academy

USPSTF Recommends Against Low-Dose Vitamin D, Calcium for Primary Prevention of Fractures in Postmenopausal Women

April 17th, 2013

A new U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommendation statement on vitamin D and calcium supplementation to prevent fractures in adults concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of the benefits and harms of:

  • Combined vitamin D and calcium supplementation for the primary prevention of fractures in premenopausal women or in men.
  • Daily supplementation with greater than 400 IU of vitamin D3 and greater than 1,000 mg of calcium for the primary prevention of fractures in noninstitutionalized postmenopausal women.

The USPSTF recommends against daily supplementation with 400 IU or less of vitamin D3 and 1,000 mg or less of calcium for the primary prevention of fractures in noninstitutionalized postmenopausal women.

The recommendation statement is based on two systematic evidence reviews and a meta-analysis on vitamin D supplementation with or without calcium to assess the effects of supplementation on bone health outcomes in community-dwelling adults, the association of vitamin D and calcium levels with bone health outcomes, and the adverse effects of supplementation.

Complete information, including a Consumer Fact Sheet, is available at http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/uspstf/uspsvitd.htm.