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The purpose of this study is to find out the levels of vitamin D associated with vitamin D insufficiency (low vitamin D status) in school-age children. Results will help to show prevalence of low vitamin D levels in children and how vitamin D levels affect their bone health. Vitamin D is important for keeping bones healthy and strong. Vitamin D is produced by the body when sunlight touches the skin. In the northern United States, in places such as Pittsburgh, the potential for vitamin D insufficiency is greater during winter because of reduced exposure to sunlight. Vitamin D levels may be lower among people with darker skin. Dark skinned individuals have more melanin in their skin, and melanin acts as a natural sunscreen. Vitamin D insufficiency during childhood has the potential to impact an individual’s achievement of peak bone mass.
This study will enroll healthy Caucasian and African-American children of both genders, ages 8 to 14.
Boys: Ages 8 to 14 years
Girls: Ages 8 to 14 years
Participants will complete 3 office visits over a 6-month period. Study visits will include physical examination for assessment of pubertal status, estimation of skin color, blood draws, assessment of calcium and vitamin D intake and sunlight exposure. Participants will be randomly assigned to take a vitamin D pill or placebo daily for the duration of the study, and parents will need to provide a 3-day record of their child’s food and beverage intake.
Duration: 6 months
National Institutes of Health
Study Description at National Institutes of Health
Kumaravel Rajakumar, MD
To get started, please contact:
Kumaravel Rajakumar, MD
Children's Hospital's main campus is located in the Lawrenceville neighborhood. Our main hospital address is:
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC
One Children’s Hospital Way
4401 Penn Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
In addition to the main hospital, Children's has many convenient locations in other neighborhoods throughout the greater Pittsburgh region.
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