Assessment, treatment and prevention of vitamin D deficiency
Intended for healthcare professionals

Assessment, treatment and prevention of vitamin D deficiency

Lucie Nield Senior lecturer in nutrition and dietetics, Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, England
Simon David Bowles Senior lecturer in nutrition, Department of Service Sector Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To learn about the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in certain patient groups

  • To understand how to assess and manage vitamin D status

  • To contribute towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD (UK readers)

  • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers)

Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent among various groups in the UK, and can result from insufficient sunlight exposure and dietary intake. There is a population-wide recommendation of 10 micrograms (400 international units) of vitamin D per day, with a daily supplement advised. However, supplement use is often suboptimal, compounding the risk of deficiency. Long-term vitamin D deficiency can cause rickets in children and osteomalacia or osteoporosis in adults. Therefore, it is important that nurses recognise which groups are at increased risk of vitamin D deficiency and understand how to assess people’s vitamin D status. Nurses also need to be able to support the prevention and treatment of low vitamin D levels, which typically involves supplementation and lifestyle changes.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2023.e12136

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software



Conflict of interest

None declared

Nield L, Bowles SD (2023) Assessment, treatment and prevention of vitamin D deficiency. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2023.e12136

Published online: 31 July 2023

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