There currently is not enough scientific evidence to recommend that healthy postmenopausal women should take low daily doses of vitamin D and calcium to reduce bone fracture risk, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) reported in guidelines published online February 26, 2013 in the Annuals of Internal Medicine. The federal government’s expert panel on preventive medicine said the combination of 400 IU of vitamin D and 1,000 mg of calcium has no effect on the risk of bone fractures in postmenopausal women who are not in nursing homes or other institutions, and evidence is lacking to support higher doses of the supplements among these women to prevent fractures. The panel’s recommendation does not apply to adults with osteoporosis or vitamin D deficiency.

Clinicians and patients are likely to be confused by the absence of guidance regarding the potential value of higher doses of vitamin D and calcium, Walter Willett, chair of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), said of the USPSTF recommendations in a video interview February 25, 2013 with MedPage Today.

View/read the MedPage Today interview
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