DRISDOL, brand of ergocalciferol capsules, USP, is a synthetic calcium regulator for oral administration. Ergocalciferol is a white, colorless crystal, insoluble in water, soluble in organic solvents, and slightly soluble in vegetable oils. It is affected by air and by light. Ergosterol or provitamin D2 is found in plants and yeast and has no antirachitic activity. There are more than 10 substances belonging to a group of steroid compounds, classified as having vitamin D or antirachitic activity. One USP unit of vitamin D2 is equivalent to one International Unit (IU), and 1 mcg of vitamin D2 is equal to 40 IU. Each capsule contains 1.25 mg (50,000 International Units vitamin D) of ergocalciferol, USP, in an edible vegetable oil.
DRISDOL is indicated for use in the treatment of hypoparathyroidism, refractory rickets, also known as vitamin D resistant rickets, and familial hypophosphatemia.
Published Studies Related to Drisdol (Ergocalciferol)
Paricalcitol Versus Ergocalciferol for Secondary Hyperparathyroidism in CKD Stages 3 and 4: A Randomized Controlled Trial. [2011.08.30]
BACKGROUND: The efficacy of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D) supplementation versus vitamin D receptor activators for the treatment of secondary hyperparathyroidism (SHPT) in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stages 3 or 4 and vitamin D deficiency is unclear... CONCLUSIONS: Paricalcitol is more effective than ergocalciferol at decreasing PTH levels in patients with CKD stages 3 or 4 with vitamin D deficiency and SHPT. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Evaluation of ergocalciferol or cholecalciferol dosing, 1,600 IU daily or 50,000 IU monthly in older adults. [2011.04]
CONTEXT: Whether ergocalciferol (D(2)) and cholecalciferol (D(3)) are equally effective to increase and maintain serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] concentration is controversial. OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to evaluate the effect of daily and once monthly dosing of D(2) or D(3) on circulating 25(OH)D and serum and urinary calcium... CONCLUSIONS: Overall, D(3) is slightly, but significantly, more effective than D(2) to increase serum 25(OH)D. One year of D(2) or D(3) dosing (1,600 IU daily or 50,000 IU monthly) does not produce toxicity, and 25(OH)D levels of less than 30 ng/ml persist in approximately 20% of individuals. Substantial between-individual response to administered vitamin D(2) or D(3) is observed.
Evaluation of ergocalciferol or cholecalciferol dosing, 1,600 IU daily or 50,000
IU monthly in older adults. 
calcium... CONCLUSIONS: Overall, D(3) is slightly, but significantly, more effective than
Treatment and prevention of vitamin D insufficiency in cystic fibrosis patients: comparative efficacy of ergocalciferol, cholecalciferol, and UV light. [2009.06]
BACKGROUND: The optimal treatment for correcting or preventing vitamin D insufficiency in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients has not been established. OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to assess the relative efficacy of three modes of vitamin D therapy: cholecalciferol (D3), ergocalciferol (D2), and UV light in raising or maintaining 25(OH)D levels above 30 ng/ml... CONCLUSION: This study demonstrates that CF subjects are able to achieve or maintain optimal vitamin D status (>30 ng/ml) with two oral regimens of either D3 or D2 treatment, the former being more efficacious. A confounding variable for this observation is the fact that the D3 and D2 capsules contained different carriers, powder-based vs. oil-based, respectively. UV therapy did not alter vitamin D status, possibly due to poor adherence to UV therapy.
Effects of ergocalciferol added to calcium on the risk of falls in elderly high-risk women. [2008.01.14]
BACKGROUND: Ergocalciferol (vitamin D(2)) supplementation plays a role in fall prevention, but the effect in patients living in the community in sunny climates remains uncertain. We evaluated the effect of ergocalciferol and calcium citrate supplementation compared with calcium alone on the risk of falls in older women at high risk of falling... CONCLUSION: Patients with a history of falling and vitamin D insufficiency living in sunny climates benefit from ergocalciferol supplementation in addition to calcium, which is associated with a 19% reduction in the relative risk of falling, mostly in winter.
Clinical Trials Related to Drisdol (Ergocalciferol)
Sustainability of Vitamin D Levels After Repletion With Ergocalciferol In Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 5D [Recruiting]
The prevalence of vitamin D deficiency increases as kidney function declines. As a result,
many hemodialysis patients often have low levels of vitamin D. Recent evidence has shown
that vitamin D supplementation may improve many aspects of poor health such as heart disease
and inflammatory markers. The objectives of this study are to determine how supplementing
dialysis patients with ergocalciferol increases vitamin D levels, how long vitamin D levels
can be maintained after a 6 month treatment course, and to examine the effect of
ergocalciferol on biomarkers of inflammation and vascular health.
Availability of Vitamin D in Orange Juice [Completed]
The purpose of this study was to determine whether vitamin D2 and vitamin D3 in orange juice
are effective at raising vitamin D levels in the blood and if vitamin D2 and vitamin D3 in
orange juice raised blood levels of 25(OH)D as well as vitamin D3 and vitamin D2
Efficacy Of Ergocalciferol In Adults According To BMI [Recruiting]
Vitamin D insufficiency is an increasing trend in the United States. According to the NHANES
data collection there was a near doubling of patients with vitamin D deficiency in 10 years.
Vitamin D deficiency is associated with several adverse outcomes such as increased
fractures, certain microbial diseases, cardiovascular diseases, and metabolic dysfunction.
The increasing prevalence of vitamin D deficiency has been attributed to the increasing
prevalence of obesity. Several studies have shown that obese patients have lower 25-OH
vitamin D (25-OHD) levels compared to nonobese patients and obese patients require more
vitamin D compared to nonobese patients. The most commonly prescribed medication to replete
vitamin D deficiency is oral ergocalciferol. To date, no prospective trials have been
published to evaluate a standard protocol in the treatment of vitamin D insufficiency in
Safety and Bioefficacy of Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3 [Completed]
Pharmacokinetic Comparison of Vitamin's D2 and D3 in Stage 5 Chronic Kidney Disease Patients on Chronic Hemodialysis [Completed]
Page last updated: 2013-02-10