Kidney Disease | Vitamin D 2 to Dialysis Patients

Kidney Disease research study

What is the primary objective of this study?

Vitamin D is necessary for healthy bones. Vitamin D is made in our skin when we are exposed to sunlight, but it is also found in foods that we eat and in vitamin pills. Low levels of vitamin D are common in many groups of people, because we do not get enough sun during the winter and because we eat few foods that have vitamin D in them. Some foods with vitamin D are salmon, mackerel, tuna, and fortified milk, which has had vitamin D added to it. We know that nearly all kidney disease patients on dialysis do not have enough vitamin D in their bodies. We believe this condition can cause muscle weakness, leading to falls and broken bones. These are common problems for patients who are receiving dialysis. For example, dialysis patients have a much higher risk of hip fractures (broken hips). However, no formal research has been done on patients with low vitamin D levels receiving dialysis, to see if they actually have muscle weakness and related problems. There are two goals of this study. First, we want to see if patients on dialysis who have low vitamin D levels are actually at risk for muscle weakness, muscle pain, and broken bones. We also want to find out if giving vitamin D pills to these patients will result in better muscle strength, less muscle pain, and fewer falls. In this study, we will compare vitamin D to placebo. Placebo capsules look exactly like vitamin D capsules but contain no active ingredients. We use placebos in research studies to be sure that the study results are due to the study drug and not to other reasons.

Who is eligible to participate?

Inclusion criteria: - Age ³ 18 - CKD on hemodialysis - Men and women - Hemoglobin ³ 9g/dl, albumin ³ 3.0g/dl, - No recent (in the last three months) admissions to the hospital - Ability to walk ten feet with or without a walking aid. Exclusion criteria: - Subjects who are pregnant or lactating - Subjects with history of kidney stones - Malabsorption syndromes - Tertiary hyperparathyroidism defined by a parathyroid hormone of >500pg/ml, current use of corticosteroids - Non-ambulatory subjects (for example paraplegic subjects) - Serious fracture in the last three months, and - Corrected calcium levels of 10.5 mg/dl or greater.

Which medical condition, disease, disorder, syndrome, illness, or injury is researched?

Kidney Disease

Muscle Weakness


Fractures, Bone

Study Interventions

Interventions can include giving participants drugs, medical devices, procedures, vaccines, and other products that are either investigational or already available or noninvasive approaches such as surveys, education, and interviews.

Drug:Ergocalciferol (Vitamin D 2)50,000units once weekly for 8 weeks then every other week for 4 weeks

Study Arms

Research studies and clinical trials typically have two or more research arms. An arm is a group of people who receive the same treatment in the study.

Study Status


Start Date: June 1, 2008

Completed Date: June 1, 2009


Type: Observational


Primary Outcome: Vitamin D 2 levels of Dialysis Patients

Secondary Outcome: Muscle strength

Study sponsors, principal investigator, and references

Principal Investigator: Ajay K Singh, M.D.

Lead Sponsor: Brigham and Women's Hospital


More information:

Discuss Asthenia