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Nutrients. 2012 Apr;4(4):319-30. doi: 10.3390/nu4040319. Epub 2012 Apr 20.

Maternal vitamin D status and delivery by cesarean.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, SOM, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Stratford, NJ 08084, USA.


We examined the association of vitamin D deficiency to risk of cesarean delivery using prospective data in a cohort of 1153 low income and minority gravidae. Circulating maternal 25-hydroxyvitamin D and intact parathyroid hormone were measured at entry to care 13.73 ± 5.6 weeks (mean ± SD). Intake of vitamin D and calcium was assessed at three time points during pregnancy. Using recent Institute of Medicine guidelines, 10.8% of the gravidae were at risk of vitamin D deficiency, and 23.8% at risk of insufficiency. Maternal 25-hydroxyvitamin D was related positively to vitamin D and calcium intakes and negatively to circulating concentrations of parathyroid hormone. Risk for cesarean delivery was increased significantly for vitamin D deficient women; there was no increased risk for gravidae at risk of insufficiency. When specific indications were examined, vitamin D deficiency was linked to a 2-fold increased risk of cesarean for prolonged labor. Results were the similar when prior guidelines for vitamin D deficiency (25(OH)D < 37.5nmol/L) and insufficiency (37.5-80 nmol/L) were utilized.


25 hydroxyvitamin D; cesarean delivery; dietary calcium intake; dietary vitamin D intake; parathyroid hormone; pregnancy; prolonged labor; vitamin D deficiency; vitamin D insufficiency

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