Vitamin D Insufficiency in a Hospital Population: A Photograph from the Laboratory Perspective
Keywords:Portugal, Seasons, Vitamin D, Vitamin D Deficiency.
AbstractIntroduction: Although vitamin D deficiency is increasingly recognized around the world, there are few studies on the Portuguese reality. This study aims to analyse vitamin D levels in the assays performed in our hospital and their relationship with age, genre, requesting specialty and moment of sample collection.
Material and Methods: Cross-sectional study of measurements of 25(HO)D performed in our Hospital between June 2012 and November 2014. Included variables: gender, age, requesting specialty, month of sample collection. Vitamin D status classified as: ‘Deficiency’ (≤ 20 ng/mL), ‘Insufficiency’ (21 - 29 ng/ml) and ‘Sufficiency’ (≥ 30 ng/mL).
Results: We included 5 439 assays; 55.0% from women; the median age was 64.0 years. Sixty per cent had ‘Deficiency’, 20.7% ‘Insufficiency’ and 18.9% ‘Sufficiency’. We found a negative correlation between age and vitamin D level (p < 0.001). We didn’t find differences in vitamin D levels between genres. Nine specialties requested 98% of the assays, namely Nephrology (56.2%). We found differences between specialties based on age and vitamin D level (p < 0.001). Vitamin D levels changed throughout the year, with higher levels in the summer, followed by autumn, spring and winter (p < 0.001). Despite this seasonal fluctuation, vitamin D sufficiency was only present in a minority of assays (27.8% in summer and 9.2% in winter).
Discussion: Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent in this population, affects individuals of all ages and is not offset by the seasonal variation of sunlight.
Conclusion: Vitamin D deficiency is a real and prevalent problem in our population that needs further attention and action, given its clinical implications.
How to Cite
All the articles published in the AMP are open access and comply with the requirements of funding agencies or academic institutions. The AMP is governed by the terms of the Creative Commons ‘Attribution – Non-Commercial Use - (CC-BY-NC)’ license, regarding the use by third parties.
It is the author’s responsibility to obtain approval for the reproduction of figures, tables, etc. from other publications.
Upon acceptance of an article for publication, the authors will be asked to complete the ICMJE “Copyright Liability and Copyright Sharing Statement “(http://www.actamedicaportuguesa.com/info/AMP-NormasPublicacao.pdf) and the “Declaration of Potential Conflicts of Interest” (http:// www.icmje.org/conflicts-of-interest). An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author to acknowledge receipt of the manuscript.
After publication, the authors are authorised to make their articles available in repositories of their institutions of origin, as long as they always mention where they were published and according to the Creative Commons license.