Key points: Vitamin D supplementation may improve follicular development and help regulate menstrual cycles in PCOS patients, especially if given with an oral diabetes medicine.
A recently published systematic review and meta-analysis in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice by Fang, et al, evaluated the role vitamin D plays in PCOS patients. The authors preformed a literature search of all randomized controlled trials that were published before 2015 comparing vitamin D supplementation with placebo or an oral diabetes medicine. There were 463 studies identified, after inclusion and exclusion criteria were applied, nine studies remained for the meta-analysis.
The nine studies included 502 women who were diagnosed with PCOS. After evaluating the data of these studies, a significant effect was seen on vitamin D supplementation and the improvement of follicular development. Additionally, the data showed that menstrual cycles improved with the use of an oral diabetes medicine and vitamin D together as compared to an oral diabetes medicine alone.
It is important to note that there were limitations to this review including level of vitamin D used and duration of treatment. Additional trials are needed to assess how vitamin D effects hormone and reproductive processes as well as if vitamin D supplementation has any effect on glucose of lipid levels for PCOS patients.
Why is this clinically relevant?
This review suggested that supplementation with vitamin D may benefit PCOS patients by improving follicular development and regulating menstrual cycles.