A recent umbrella review and meta-analysis, which is a review of multiple studies, reviewed 32 studies of which 13 addressed vitamin D plus calcium and 19 addressed vitamin D alone. This was published recently in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
This study showed a small reduction in the incidence of hip fractures in those who received vitamin D and calcium supplements, but this was not reproduced in communities across the board. The authors rate these studies as quite diverse and differed in various ways. Nevertheless, the vitamin D supplements did not reduce the incidence of hip fractures.
Take home message: vitamin D supplement itself does not reduce incidence of hip fractures. Supplements of calcium are reasonable, especially if patients are on acid-reducing medications such as esomeprazole, pantoprazole, omeprazole, lansoprazole, etc.
In older adults, vitamin D levels should be checked and corrected if deficient. The last, but most important, measure is to do regular exercises including resistance exercises.
For the next blog.