Several cancer treatment centers and physicians are now giving those with breast cancer 5000 or more IU/day of vitamin D, but there are no published results on the effectiveness of this treatment yet.
Additional support for a beneficial role of higher serum 25(OH)D levels for breast cancer was found for an association with higher survival rates for higher levels after breast cancer diagnosis1. Those with >30 ng/mL had a 17% 12-year all-cause mortality rate, while those with <15 ng/mL had a 34% 12-year mortality rate. See, also, Goodwin et al2
A 40-month follow-up study of Korean women treated for breast cancer found recurrence depended both on serum 25(OH)D level at time of diagnosis as well as type of breast cancer: “The 25-OHD levels were deficient (< 20 ng/ml) in 75 patients (24.2%), insufficient (20-29 ng/ml) in 95 (30.6%), and sufficient (30-150 ng/ml) in 140 (45.2%). Women with deficient 25-OHD levels were at increased risk of recurrence compared with those with sufficient vitamin D levels (P = 0.002). The 25-OHD concentration was inversely associated with prognosis of patients with cancer of the luminal A (P = 0.012) and luminal B subtypes (P = 0.023), but not with the prognosis of patients with Her2/neu-enriched (P = 0.245) or triple-negative (P = 0.879) cancer subtypes.”3.
Each 1000 IU/day of vitamin D increases serum 25(OH)D levels by 6-10 ng/mL (15-25 nmol/L). Several cancer treatment centers and physicians are now giving those with breast and other cancers 5000 or more IU/day of vitamin D with no adverse effects45, but there are no published results on the effectiveness of this treatment yet. A review of the benefit of vitamin D for breast cancer survivors is given in Hines et al6. A review of vitamin D for preventing and treating cancer in general is given in Grant7.
Page last edited: 22 August 2011
- Goodwin, P. J. Ennis, M. Pritchard, K. I. Koo, J. Hood, N. Frequency of vitamin D (Vit D) deficiency at breast cancer (BC) diagnosis and association with risk of distant recurrence and death in a prospective cohort study of T1-3, N0-1, M0 BC. J Clin Oncol. 2008; 26 (May 20 suppl): abstr 511.
- Goodwin, P. J. Ennis, M. Pritchard, K. I. Koo, J. Hood, N. Prognostic effects of 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in early breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2009 Aug 10; 27 (23): 3757-63.
- Kim, H. J. Lee, Y. M. Ko, B. S. Lee, J. W. Yu, J. H. Son, B. H. Gong, G. Y. Kim, S. B. Ahn, S. H. Vitamin D Deficiency is Correlated with Poor Outcomes in Patients with Luminal-type Breast Cancer. Annals of surgical oncology. 2011 Jul; 18 (7): 1830-6.
- Vashi, P. G. Trukova, K. Lammersfeld, C. A. Braun, D. P. Gupta, D. Impact of oral vitamin D supplementation on serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in oncology. Nutr J. 2010; 960.
- Peppone, L. J. Huston, A. J. Reid, M. E. Rosier, R. N. Zakharia, Y. Trump, D. L. Mustian, K. M. Janelsins, M. C. Purnell, J. Q. Morrow, G. R. The effect of various vitamin D supplementation regimens in breast cancer patients. Breast cancer research and treatment. 2011 May; 127 (1): 171-7.
- Hines, S. L. Jorn, H. K. Thompson, K. M. Larson, J. M. Breast cancer survivors and vitamin D: a review. Nutrition. 2010 Mar; 26 (3): 255-62.
- Grant, W. B. Benefits of vitamin D in reducing the risk of cancer: Time to include vitamin D in cancer treatment?. J Soc Integr Oncol. 2010 Summer; 8 (3): 81-8.