Vitamin D Blood Test Cost


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 13, 2018

Vitamin D is essential to our bone health and it has been proven to help prevent rickets and osteomalacia.  Previous research studies have also shown those who lack vitamin D are also prone to other serious diseases such cancer and heart diseases, prompting doctors to order vitamin D tests to see your levels.

For this reason, individuals who are considered to be a high risk for vitamin D deficiency may often be asked to take a vitamin D blood test, especially if suffering from osteoporosis, osteomalacia or a syndrome which keeps them from absorbing enough vitamin D, but some skeptics state 90 percent of the time, the test isn’t necessary.

Vitamin D Blood Test Cost
Tears of the Sun” (CC BY 2.0) by jijake1977

How much does a vitamin D test cost?

The costs of a vitamin D test will greatly depend on the testing method the laboratory uses as labs will use different testing methods.  For the most part, however, the average cost of a vitamin D blood test will range anywhere from $45 to $65, but if you were to have this test performed inside of a doctor’s office, you would need to add the doctor’s examination fee as well.

As for health insurance, the test is often covered by your policy as long it is considered medically necessary.  If covered, you will only be responsible for your co-pay and meeting your deductible, all of which will greatly vary depending on your insurance coverage.  If you do want to use your health insurance policy, it’s highly recommended you check with your insurance company and doctor’s office to know what you’re responsible for.

At the Walk-in Lab, for example, you can order a test directly from their website for about $60.  Once ordered, you simply go to a local lab they work with, have your blood drawn and they will send your results in as little as three days.

On Amazon.com, some labs offer its services for about $50 to $65.

How does the test work?

A vitamin D blood test is very straightforward.  No preparation is required and all it requires is a simple blood draw via the vein in your arm.  Once your blood is drawn, it is sent off to the lab, and depending on the lab you work with, the results can be sent in as little as 48 hours.

This test will usually assess the volume of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D, which is the form of vitamin D that is circulating throughout the blood, according to Quest Diagnostics.  Depending on the test, some may include information on the levels of vitamin D2 and D3, which make up the total of vitamin D levels.

What the test is used for

It can help determine if you have any bone weakness, bone malformations and/or an abnormal metabolism of calcium as a result of a vitamin D deficiency.

In some cases, it can help diagnose or even observe difficulties with the parathyroid gland functioning since PTH is vital for the vitamin D activation.

May be used to help screen people who are at a high risk as per the National Osteoporosis Foundation, the Institute of Medicine, and the Endocrine Society.

Also used to screen those who may be suffering from a disease that interferes with fat absorption, such as cystic fibrosis or Crohn disease.

After gastric bypass surgery, this test may confirm the body is able to absorb enough vitamin D.

Can help determine if the vitamin D being prescribed is working according to plan.

Source:  LabCorp

Facts you should know

According to this infographic, if you do not have a medical reason to be tested, the treatment options won’t change, even if the test finds you have a deficiency.  Those who suffer from low vitamin D levels are often encouraged to take a supplement and/or eating foods rich in vitamin D, such as cereal, salmon, cod liver oil, tuna, eggs, cheese, orange juice or milk.  Also, sun exposure can produce all of the vitamin D you need throughout the year by staying outside for five to 30 minutes twice a week during the spring, summer and fall months.  However, if considering the sun, the
U.S. Preventive Services Task Force does recommend avoiding it as this can increases your chances of skin cancer.

Those who are obese or have darker skin are known to have lower vitamin D levels, but no studies have shown these lower levels will hurt your health.

ChoosingWisely.org states you should only consider the test if you have osteoporosis or have a disease which damages your body’s ability to use vitamin D.  If your doctor does recommend this test, ask him or her about your risks because if your risks are high, then the test makes sense; however, if the risks are considered low, then you may want to ask if you can skip the test and consider boosting your levels with food or supplements.

What is a normal vitamin D level?

How much vitamin D do I need?

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