New research shows that older women who are not getting enough of Vitamin D through their supplements and other means are at risk for suffering from back pain. In the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society they noted that for older people, Vitamin D deficiency has been tied to a number of health problems, including an increased risk of bone fracture. Lack of Vitamin D could also contribute to musculoskeletal pain.
Dr. Gregory E. Hicks of the University of Delaware in Newark and his colleagues wrote in the Journal:
“Given that low vitamin D status is fairly prevalent in older adults and that there are significant functional consequences to untreated chronic pain, these findings argue strongly for querying adults about their pain and potentially screening older women with significant back pain for vitamin D deficiency.”
Almost 960 women and men over the age of 65 had their blood levels for Vitamin D deficiency checked. Fifty-eight percent of the women in the study, and 27 percent of the men, had at least some moderate pain in at least one region of the body.
The study didn’t show any relationship between Vitamin D levels and pain in men. But women who had Vitamin D deficiency were almost twice as likely to have back pain that was moderate or worse. But vitamin D deficiency was not linked to pain in other parts of the body. Lack of Vitamin D has been known to cause bone softening and that problem is more common in women than men.
Researchers are not in a hurry to say that giving people Vitamin D supplementation will definitely help women with back pain. They said that randomized controlled trials should be done before they are willing to determine the helpful effects of Vitamin D supplementation for this purpose.