Vitamin D deficiency and metabolism in pediatric Crohn’s disease

As noted in previous blog posts (see links below), vitamin D has received a great deal of attention with a number of chronic diseases.  In this latest study from CHOP, the incidence and mechanisms of vitamin D deficiency in pediatric Crohn’s disease are explored (Inflamm Bowel Dis 2013; 19: 45-33).

At diagnosis (2002-2005), Crohn’s disease (CD) participants (n=78) had their serum vitamin D assays and parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels checked.  Then, these values were sequentially followed at 6 months, 12 months, and a median of 43 months later (n=52). The average age of the CD patients was 12.7 years.

Key findings:

  • 42% of CD participants were 25-OH D deficient (<20 ng/mL) with an odds ratio of 2.1 compared with controls.
  • Among patients with 25-OH D <30 ng/mL, CD patients had a lower PTH than controls.
  • At final visit, 3% remained 25-OH D deficient and PTH levels corrected.
  • Risk factors, besides CD, for vitamin D deficiency: black race (OR 10.4), visit in winter (OR 2.4), age 12 to <15 (OR 2.7), age >15 (OR 3.2).  Greater disease activity was associated with lower vitamin D levels at baseline.

Implications of this study:

  1. Vitamin D deficiency normally causes secondary hyperparathyroidism.  With newly-diagnosed CD, there was a relative hypoparathyroidism that resolved with therapy.  “It is conceivable that proinflammatory cytokines associated with CD …prevent an appropriate PTH response.”
  2. The authors state that ‘vitamin D deficiency likely contributes to the pathogenesis of CD through effects on T and B lymphocyte, macrophage, and dendritic cell regulation.”  Correcting vitamin D deficiency may improve CD treatment response in addition to potential improvements in bone health.

Related posts:

4 thoughts on “Vitamin D deficiency and metabolism in pediatric Crohn’s disease

  1. Pingback: Explaining the Vitamin D Paradox | gutsandgrowth

  2. Pingback: Another Reason for Inflammatory Bowel Disease Patients to Take Vitamin D | gutsandgrowth

  3. Pingback: Why Adding Vitamin D May Not Help IBD | gutsandgrowth

  4. Pingback: Get Here If You Can: Improved Vitamin D Status | gutsandgrowth

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