Obtained through supplementation or by dietary means, calcium is an important mineral needed for healthy bones and various functions in the body. The most commonly used forms of calcium supplements are calcium carbonate and calcium citrate.
Before using a calcium supplement, make sure your healthcare provider has up-to-date information on any other medications you are taking and any other medical problems you may have. For example, this medicine may not be safe for people who have:
Achlorhydria (low or absent stomach acid)
High or low phosphate levels in the blood (hyperphosphatemia)
Although generally well tolerated, calcium supplements can cause side effects. Some of the most commonly reported reactions include gas, constipation, and belching.
(For more information about this supplement, click Calcium. This full-length article includes details about specific uses, effectiveness, warnings, and more.)
Written by/reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: ArthurSchoenstadt, MD
List of references (click here):
Jellin JM, editor. Pharmacist's Letter/Prescriber's Letter Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Web site. Available at: http://naturaldatabase.com/. Accessed October 21 2008.
National Institutes of Health. Office of Dietary Supplements. Dietary supplement fact sheet: calcium (9/23/2005). NIH Web site. Available at: http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/calcium.asp. Accessed October 13, 2008.
Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine. Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium, Phosphorus, Magnesium, Vitamin D, and Fluoride. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1999. Available at: http://books.nap.edu/books/0309063507/html/index.html. Accessed October 21, 2008.
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