First Advisor

McCallum, Colleen

Thesis Committee Member(s)

McCallum, Colleen


Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice


Loretto Heights School of Nursing

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Number of Pages

54 pages


Executive Summary Problem Vitamin D deficiency is a concern, not only in the United States, but worldwide. Identifying a correlation for osteoporosis and osteopenia in vitamin D deficient patients may reduce the risk of osteoporosis-related fractures. The PICO question for this capstone project was: In osteoporotic or osteopenic patients, what is the relationship between reduced serum levels of vitamin D OH 25 compared to normal serum levels of vitamin D OH 25, in the incidence of osteoporosis or osteopenia? Osteoporosis contributes to fracture risk in patients, which subsequently has been shown to result from an insufficient level of vitamin D. Purpose The purpose of the project was to evaluate the relationship between osteoporosis and osteopenia and Vitamin D OH 25 levels. Goals and Objectives The goal of this study was to determine if a relationship existed between vitamin D deficiency and osteoporosis or osteopenia and note its clinical significance. Identifying a correlation between these factors may help to raise awareness of the need for testing of vitamin D levels in the investigator's practice and the community she serves. Plan The potential correlation between vitamin D and osteoporosis and osteopenia was identified and outlined. The project was implemented using PICO analysis at the doctorate level. This quality improvement (QI) project utilized a quantitative retrospective study design involving 91 patients. Outcome data was compared utilizing patients who had previously undergone a bone density test using a DEXA scan and also had Vitamin D OH 25 laboratory testing over the previous three-year period. The main outcome that was measured was the number of patients diagnosed with osteoporosis or osteopenia and the laboratory blood level value of vitamin D OH 25. Other variables included DEXA scan results, vitamin D OH 25 lab results, gender, age, steroid use history, and exercise history. Using one-way ANOVA testing, the study identified four groups; once this was completed, multiple regression was used to analyze the variables involved. Outcomes and Measures The study consisted of 12 men and 79 women. 39% of patients had both osteoporosis or osteopenia and vitamin D deficiency, 36% of patients had osteoporosis or osteopenia and did not have vitamin D deficiency, 5% of patients had normal bone and were vitamin D deficient and 20% of patients had normal bone and normal vitamin D results. Results of the one-way ANOVA test showed a significance of p=0.026 for vitamin D when compared to the control group diagnosis. The results of this analysis show that vitamin D deficiency is a statistically significant factor in osteoporosis and osteopenia. The factor of vitamin D deficiency had a higher statistical significance than exercise history, steroid use, gender, and age.

Date of Award

Fall 2014

Location (Creation)

Colorado (state); Denver (county); Denver (inhabited place)

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