The Association of Prenatal Vitamin D Status With Pregnancy and Neonatal Outcomes

Di Mao, Lai Yuk Yuen, Chung Shun Ho, Chi Chiu Wang, Claudia Ha Ting Tam, Michael Ho Ming Chan, William L. Lowe, Ronald Ching Wan Ma, Wing Hung Tam*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Context: Vitamin D inadequacy is globally prevalent among pregnant women; however, its impact on pregnancy remains inconclusive. Objective: This study aims to explore the associations of maternal and umbilical cord serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) levels with pregnancy and neonatal outcomes. Method: We used archived serum samples from the Hyperglycemia and Adverse Pregnancy Outcome (HAPO) Study participants in the Hong Kong center and assayed maternal 25(OH)D levels at midgestation and umbilical cord 25(OH)D at birth using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectroscopy. Data regarding pregnancy and perinatal outcomes were extracted from the HAPO study dataset and the hospital computerized medical system. Results: Only 247 (16.4%) mothers and 66 (5.0%) neonates met the criteria for vitamin D sufficiency (ie, 25(OH)D ≥ 75 nmol/L). The ratio of umbilical cord to maternal vitamin D levels was positively associated with maternal age and ambient solar radiation at the month of delivery, while negatively associated with maternal serum total 25(OH)D at midgestation (all P < .001). Umbilical cord serum 25(OH)D was independently associated with a lower primary cesarean section rate (OR 0.990, 95% CI 0.982-0.999; P = .032). There were no associations of maternal and umbilical cord 25(OH)D levels with other adverse pregnancy and neonatal outcomes. Conclusion: Placental vitamin D transfer was found to be higher with a lower maternal vitamin D level, older maternal age, and higher ambient solar radiation at the time of the delivery. The protective effect of sufficient vitamin D in a cesarean section will require further studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberbvad142
JournalJournal of the Endocrine Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2024


  • maternal
  • neonatal outcomes
  • placental transfer
  • pregnancy outcomes
  • umbilical cord
  • vitamin D

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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