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March 24 2010

Chronic Pain and Risk of Falls in Older Adults—Reply

JAMA. 2010;303(12):1147-1149. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.325

In Reply: Dr Mesrine and colleagues and Dr Wilber and colleagues suggest a potential role for vitamin D deficiency in the association between pain and falls that we reported. We agree that this is possible because vitamin D deficiency may contribute to pain and muscle weakness as well as falls. Unfortunately, we did not measure serum vitamin D concentrations in the MOBILIZE Boston participants.

Alternatively, to assess for potential confounding of the relationship between pain and falls by vitamin D deficiency, we conducted a set of analyses examining the association between the use of vitamin D supplements or multivitamin supplements and pain, and we reanalyzed our original data with additional adjustment for the use of vitamin D supplements or multivitamin supplements. For both vitamin D and multivitamin supplements, we looked at any use in the 2 weeks before baseline and also regular supplement use (≥5 d/wk).