The Role of Vitamin C in Orthopedic Trauma and Bone Health

Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). 2015 Jul;44(7):306-11.


Vitamin C is an essential micronutrient with an adult daily recommended intake of 75 mg for women and 90 mg for men. Smokers should consume an additional 35 mg per day because of the increased oxidative stresses from cigarette smoke. Observational data support the hypothesis that high dietary intake and supplementation with vitamin C may reduce the risk of hip fractures in postmenopausal women. Results of 2 high-quality trials support use of vitamin C 500 mg daily for 50 days as prophylaxis against complex regional pain syndrome after wrist fracture treated conservatively and operatively. Observational evidence exists for similar treatment after foot and ankle surgery. The role of vitamin C in preventing osteoarthritis has tremendous potential, though results in animal and human studies are controversial. The heterogeneous results and the lack of prospective trials preclude any recommendation at this time.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Ascorbic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Humans
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Musculoskeletal System / drug effects*
  • Musculoskeletal System / injuries*
  • Oxidative Stress


  • Ascorbic Acid