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LifeLabs supports over 19 million patient visits annually, performing over 100 million tests.
LifeLabs is Canada’s largest community laboratory testing services provider.
Vitamin D is a family of compounds that is essential for the proper growth and formation of teeth and bones. Vitamin D helps your body absorb
calcium, and maintains bone strength throughout your life. Your body produces Vitamin D when the sun’s UV rays contact your skin. Other sources of
the vitamin include fish, eggs, and fortified dairy products. It’s also available as a dietary supplement for those who may not get enough exposure to
sunlight, or lack Vitamin D in their food intake.
Vitamin D deficiency can lead to several health issues over time. If your Vitamin D levels are low and they’re accompanied by bone pain, the deficiency
could be affecting your bone density. Without sufficient Vitamin D in the system, your bones will be soft, malformed, and unable to repair themselves
normally, resulting in diseases called rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults. Vitamin D has also been shown to influence the growth and
differentiation of many other tissues and to help regulate the immune system. These other functions have linked Vitamin D with other disorders, such
as autoimmunity and cancer. Low blood levels of the vitamin have been associated with increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease, cognitive
impairment in older adults and severe asthma in children.
The 25-hydroxy Vitamin D test is a simple blood test, and the best way to monitor Vitamin D levels. The amount of 25-hydroxyVitamin D in your blood is
a good indication of how much Vitamin D your body has. The test can determine if your Vitamin D levels are too high or too low.
The test is also known as the 25-OH Vitamin D test and the calcidiol 25-hydroxycholecalcifoerol test. It can be an important indicator of osteoporosis
(bone weakness) and rickets (bone malformation).
There are several factors which can increase your risk of Vitamin D deficiency. Young children and the elderly are particularly vulnerable to complications arising from insufficient Vitamin D in their systems.
Other factors that affect Vitamin D levels are:
Your doctor will order this test if they suspect that you’re showing signs of Vitamin D deficiency, or if you’re at risk of developing this deficiency.
There are several factors, including your previous medical and test history, which would determine when this test should be ordered for you. If you have low levels of calcium, phosphorus and / or parathyroid hormone, or exhibiting bone weakness, fatigue, loss in muscle mass, hair loss, the 25-hydroxyVitamin D is usually ordered to identify a possible deficiency in Vitamin D.
Known risk factors like being homebound, institutionalized, having low sunlight exposure, obesity or having fat malabsorption can also lead to Vitamin D deficiency. This test is often requested before an individual begins treatment for osteoporosis.
When Vitamin D, calcium, phosphorus, or magnesium supplementation is necessary, Vitamin D levels are sometimes measured to monitor treatment effectiveness. Your doctor may change the recommended dosage based on the results of this test.
Rarely, this test may be done when calcium is high or a person has a disease that might produce excess amounts of Vitamin D, such as sarcoidosis or some forms of lymphoma. It may also occur from taking too many vitamin pills and other nutritional supplements. High doses of Vitamin D can result in a condition called hypervitaminosis D. Hypervitaminosis is a rare but serious condition that could put you at risk for liver or kidney problems.
The vitamin D test can be beneficial to some patients based on symptoms presented and the assessment of your healthcare provider. Talk to your healthcare provider about whether the 25-Hydroxy Vitamin D test is appropriate for you.
Your test report will indicate the Vitamin D levels in the form of nanomoles/liter (nmol/L) or nanograms/milliliter (ng/mL). The results can indicate whether your levels are normal, deficient, insufficient or too high. Your medical history, age, gender and other factors influence the outcome of the tests. It’s best to consult your doctor on the next course of action. Your doctor will help explain the results of your test and determine whether further testing or treatment is required.
The 25-Hydroxy Vitamin D is a blood test
The test costs $35 in Ontario. To find out the current price in your province, please call LifeLabs customer care.
Your test results will be available to your healthcare provider within 2 weeks of sample collection.
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