Nov 12, 2010 - 8:54 pm
I was looking for the thread on vitamin D, because I promised to report back after my appointment with the specialist, which I had this week.
Ton Wednesday, I had my appointment with an MD who works in the Integrative Medicine department at Memorial Sloan Kettering. Dr. Wesa is conducting a study about Stage 4 colon cancer and vitamin D levels. Despite high levels of prescription vitamin D (50,000 iu twice a week, plus 2,000 iu of D-3 daily) my vitamin D levels remain low. I’m not eligible for her study, but she welcomed me as a patient.
She told me that research has shown that the D-2 form of vitamin D is not well-absorbed, and that is the one in the prescription D. D-3 is much better absorbed, and is found in most of the available supplements. Her research is with high levels of the D3, and she has found that she can normalize someone with 3 weeks of extremely high D (50,000 iu 3 times a week) whereas, the same quantity of D-2 would take months, if ever, to normalize.
Vitamin D is very important to track in colon cancer patients. Studies show that good levels of vitamin D (40 – 60 ng/ml) correlate with better outcomes. (My level has been in the 20s fsince they started testing, and I’ve been on at least 50,000 iu of D-2 weekly for over 2 years.)
I am currently on 20,000 iu of D-3/day (using D-3 from the vitamin section of my pharmacy) for 2 weeks, to be followed by 2 weeks of 8,000 iu/day. After 4 weeks, we’ll check my blood levels again for improvement. Ultimately, I’ll probably be on 5,000 iu/day as a maintenance level. My primary care was going to re-check in 6 months, because the formulation she gave me would have taken that long.
I’ll let you know how it goes. But if you haven’t had your D levels checked, please request it. Know that to supplement with 1,000 or 2,000 iu/day is reasonable. I would only go to the levels I’m now on while under a doctor’s supervision.
**** UPDATE *****
26 days after starting the revised protocol, and my D levels are in the normal range (50 ng/ml vs 29 ng/ml before.) After 2 years of taking extreme doses of D2, I'm thrilled that I've finally achieved an acceptable level on D3. I have yet to learn what level of D3 I will be using for maintenance.
I love good news!