ALLEXPERT.com response by Dr. Wald to vitamin D toxicity.
Category: Alternative Medicine
Subject: Vitamin D toxicity?
I followed Dr Mercolas recommendation for a natural vit D flu "vaccine" 2,000IU per kg - once a day for 3 days. Later in the month (January 30) I had blood test which showed my vit D level at 96ng, and a calcium level of 10.5 (normal was up to 10.4). Do these levels signify vitamin D toxicity?
The Dr only recommended I stop vitamin D supplements nothing else... months later I am experiencing kidney pain, my calcium level is 10.6 (vit D was not tested) - is there anything I can do to help eliminate the extra vit D and calcium?
VITAMIN D3 TOXICITY
This is a great question and I get similar questions all of the time. The problem with Dr. Mercola's suggestion is that it is wrong!! Meaning, that providing a generalized recommendation for any vitamin or mineral is never based on one's exact needs. Here is what I do...
Measure the blood level of vitamin D3 (25-dihydroxyvitamin D3). If the level is less than 70 ng/dL than it is too low. Most doctors will incorrectly tell you thay anything above 30 "sufficient" because this is often what the actual lab test report says right on it. Problem is that this statement is not based upon any scientific evidence. The scientific literature is clear that above 70 is optimal...I like 75, but this must be taken in context with all other lab findings, health interview and medical and other health problems. I had a man visit me with a history of kidney stones twice in his past. His calcium was high normal and he was taking vitamin D. The vitamin D caused hyperparathyroidism and hypercalcemia....the latter is what you have. Yes, your doctor did the right thing by asking you to stop consuming your vitamin D3. hypercalcemia can be caused by dehydration, hyperparathyroisim (primary or secondary from many causing including excess vitamin D3). But what is excess vitamin D3?
Excess depending upon how the individual uses the vitamin. I take 100,000 IUs per week and my calcium is an 8! Perfectly normal! You say that your kidney's hurt, but it is not at all likely that this is from your recent vitamin D3 or high calcium levels unless these levels have been high or many months at least. The only way to know if you have a kidney stone is if you pass it or if you have either a CT or better yet a kidney sonogram performed...first, stopping the D and then go from there. If you continue to have flank (what you call kidney pain), see your doctor.
So how do you eliminate the vitamin D?
You don't!~ Meaning that you cannot! Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin meaning that it can store in the body for many months and even years. Don't worry though because within weeks your calcium will likely come right down once you stop the vitamin D3. However, the D3 may have nothing whatsoever to do with your slightly high calcium...making a diagnosis of hypercalcemia (high calcium) based upon a single not very accurate blood test is not too smart. In short, given your calcium and vitamin D level I cannot entirely say that your vitamin D3 intake is too high. But, the definition of vitamin D toxicity does include high calcium levels that can cause all sorts of symptoms...all of which go away once the vitamin D naturally clears the body.
I have lots of information in the form of articles and a video on my website.
I do hope that this helps.
Dr. Michael Wald
The Blood Detective
DC, MD, DCN
Integrated Medicine of Mount Kisco
495 E. Main Street, Mount Kisco NY