Original ArticlesUnderutilization of Calcium and Vitamin D by Older Adults in a Large General Internal Medicine PracticeNess, Jose1*; Aronow, Wilbert S2; Newkirk, Erin1; McDanel, Deanna1 Author Information 1Department of Internal Medicine, University of Iowa School of Medicine, Iowa City, Iowa; and the 2Department of Medicine, Division of Geriatrics, New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York. *Address for correspondence: Department of Internal Medicine, University of Iowa, 200 Hawkins Drive, Iowa City, IA 52242. E-mail: [email protected] American Journal of Therapeutics: March 2005 - Volume 12 - Issue 2 - p 113-116 doi: 10.1097/01.mjt.0000132254.88027.71 Buy Metrics Abstract The underutilization of calcium and vitamin D supplements in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis is common among high-risk elders. Less is known about the prevalence and adequacy of calcium and vitamin D use by the general population of older adults. We performed a retrospective chart analysis of 617 women and 383 men over the age of 60 (mean age 73 ± 9 years) seen at an internal medicine practice to establish the prevalence and evaluate the adequacy of calcium and vitamin D supplementation. Adequate supplementation was defined according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation guidelines and the National Institutes of Health Consensus Development Panel on Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis or osteopenia was documented in 207 (33.6%) women and 21 (5.5%) men (P < 0.01). Of 383 men, 116 (30.3%) used calcium, 25 (6.5%) used adequate doses of calcium, 109 (28.5%) used vitamin D, and only 8 (2.1%) used adequate doses of vitamin D. Of 617 women, 415 (67.3%) used calcium, 199 (32.3%) used adequate doses of calcium, 347 (56.2%) used vitamin D, and 83 (21.7%) used adequate doses of vitamin D. When compared with women, men were less likely to be on calcium (OR 0.21, 95% CI 0.16-0.28), on adequate calcium replacement (OR0.15, 95% CI 0.11-0.23), on vitamin D (OR 0.32, 95% CI 0.25-0.42), and on adequate vitamin D replacement (OR 0.13, 95% CI 0.07-0.26). Calcium and vitamin D were greatly underutilized among older patients in an internal medicine clinic. Inadequate replacement doses were common, and men were particularly susceptible to undertreatment. © 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.