Maternal vitamin D levels during pregnancy and neonatal health: evidence to date and clinical implications

Ther Adv Musculoskelet Dis. 2016 Aug;8(4):124-35. doi: 10.1177/1759720X16656810. Epub 2016 Jul 13.


Low maternal vitamin D levels during pregnancy have been associated with a plethora of adverse neonatal outcomes, including small for gestational age and preterm births, detrimental effect on offspring bone and teeth development, and risk of infectious diseases. Although most observational studies indicate a significant linear relationship between maternal 25-hydroxyvitamin D and the above outcomes, some randomized controlled trials to date are inconclusive, mostly due to differences in study design and supplementation regimen. The currently available results indicate that vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy reduces the risk of preterm birth, low birth weight, dental caries of infancy, and neonatal infectious diseases such as respiratory infections and sepsis. This narrative review aims to summarize available trial results regarding the effect of low maternal vitamin D levels during pregnancy, in conjunction with neonatal outcomes on the field, with a discourse on the appropriate clinical approach of this important issue.

Keywords: hypovitaminosis D; infectious diseases; pregnancy; preterm birth; small for gestational age.

Publication types

  • Review