Vitamin D has always been recognized by medical experts as a vital factor in health maintenance by helping in bone development, strengthening of the immune system, aiding in weight loss, reducing the risk of respiratory and cardiovascular diseases, cancer, osteoporosis, and diabetes. The list of medical conditions affected by vitamin D may increase with a recent study associating low levels of vitamin D to increased risk of developing pelvic floor disorders especially stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP).
In a study published in the medical journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, researchers from SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, New York found that women suffering from pelvic floor disorders had low levels of vitamin D. This connection was made after evaluating data from the 2005-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey involving 1,881 non-pregnant women over the age of 20 years.
Responses from those surveyed revealed that 82 percent had vitamin D levels that were deemed deficient which in this case would be lower than 30 nanograms per milliliter. Of this number, 23 percent were reportedly suffering from one or more pelvic floor disorders and these women had significantly lower levels of vitamin D compared to the others in the group.
According to researchers of the study, those with higher levels of vitamin D had lower risks of pelvic floor disorders. It was determined that the risk in older women, who were supposed to be strong candidates for these pelvic floor disorders, was 45 percent lower if vitamin D levels were within normal range.
Produced in the body as a result of exposure to sunlight or found in certain products or supplements, vitamin D is actually a group of fat-soluble prohormones that encourages the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorous. This vitamin is very important in the strengthening of the bones and muscles which may explain why incontinence and other pelvic floor disorders may result since any deficiency in vitamin D may result to weak pelvic floor muscles.
For women who may be at risk of developing pelvic floor disorders, addressing the deficiency of vitamin D may be beneficial as suggested by the results of the study. Researchers, however, believe that further studies may be needed to validate these findings and to evaluate the role of vitamin D in the development of pelvic floor disorders. In light of the rapid increase of these disorders which have already affected millions of people, this need for further studies becomes very critical.
These findings should be very welcome to the thousands of women who may develop POP or SUI if indeed vitamin D may reduce the risk of getting these conditions. This may mean being spared the need for surgical procedures such as the vaginal mesh surgery which has been in the limelight recently for the injuries it has caused to thousands of patients. Numerous vaginal mesh lawsuits have been filed across the country as a result of the injuries suffered by women. Learn more about this by checking vaginalmeshlawsuitscenter.com.