Researchers have found that vitamin D2 supplements taken for six months did not reduce dialysis patients’ need for erythropoiesis-stimulating drugs to treat anemia.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, and led by  Dana Miskulin, MD, from Tufts Medical Center, is the largest randomized clinical trial to date on the effects of nutritional vitamin D in dialysis patients.

“This study also did not find an effect of supplementing hemodialysis patients with nutritional vitamin D on several other secondary outcomes including parathyroid hormone levels, inflammatory markers, infection, or cardiovascular events, though the statistical power for these clinical outcomes was limited,” said Miskulin. The trial included 276 patients who were randomized to 6 months of vitamin D2 or placebo.