“This person had taken a high-dose vitamin D capsule daily for two months, while monthly administration was prescribed,” says the FAMHP. The patient became apathetic over time. A blood test after death confirmed an overdose of vitamin D. Apart from his advanced age, the person had no other risk factors.
Because vitamin D capsules are popular, especially in winter to make up for the lack of sunlight, the FAMHP is now issuing a warning to carefully read the package leaflet of the supplements and to ask your GP or pharmacist for advice. “Specialties with a high concentration of vitamin D or vitamin D derivatives can easily cause intoxication if errors are made in the dosage. It is absolutely necessary to follow the dosage recommendations,” it sounds, especially in older people.
According to the FAMHP, it is also important to take into account “all possible sources of vitamin D, such as other vitamin D-containing medicines, vitamin D-fortified foods and dietary supplements” when taking vitamin D capsules. At an International Congress of Poison Control Centers, the center in Milan identified vitamin D as the fifth most common cause of medication error-related calls.
The FAMHP additionally asks pharmacists to “pay particular attention to the accuracy of the calculations of the quantities to be weighed when they make a pharmaceutical or officinal preparation containing vitamin D”.