Vitamin D - Learn the Facts

Vitamin D , also known as ergocalciferol-D2, cholecalciferol-D3 and alfacalcido, is a fat-soluble vitamin that helps your body absorb calcium and phosphorus. Having the right amount of vitamin D, calcium, and phosphorus is important for building and keeping strong bones.

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Vitamin D is used to treat and prevent bone disorders such as rickets, osteomalacia. Vitamin D is made by the body when skin is exposed to sunlight. Sunscreen, protective clothing, limited exposure to sunlight, dark skin, and age may prevent getting enough Vitamin D from the sun. Vitamin D with calcium is used to treat or prevent bone loss (osteoporosis).

Vitamin D is also used with other medications to treat low levels of calcium or phosphate caused by certain disorders such as hypoparathyroidism, pseudohypoparathyroidism, and familial hypophosphatemia. It may be used in kidney disease to keep calcium levels normal and allow normal bone growth. Vitamin D drops (or other supplements) are given to breast-fed infants because breast milk usually has low levels of vitamin D.

This information is obtained from First DataBank for use as an educational aid.