Vitamin D Deficiency in Cirrhosis
METHODS: Our retrospective case series comprised 89 patients with alcoholic cirrhosis and 34 patients with primary biliary cirrhosis who visited our outpatient clinic in 2005 and underwent a serum vitamin D status assessment.
RESULTS: Among the patients with alcoholic cirrhosis, 85% had serum vitamin D levels below 50 nmol/L and 55% had levels below 25 nmol/L, as compared to 60% and 16% of the patients with primary biliary cirrhosis, respectively (P < 0.001). In both groups, serum vitamin D levels decreased with increasing liver disease severity, as determined by the Child-Pugh score.
CONCLUSION: Vitamin D deficiency in cirrhosis relates to liver dysfunction rather than aetiology, with lower levels of vitamin D in alcoholic cirrhosis than in primary biliary cirrhosis.
Keywords: Alcoholic liver cirrhosis, Child-Pugh score, Primary biliary cirrhosis, Vitamin D deficiency
From press release:
Vitamin D deficiency is a well reported complication in chronic cholestatic liver disease such as primary biliary cirrhosis. While the prevalence and treatment of this deficiency has been addressed in many articles over the last decades, little is known of the vitamin D status in alcoholic liver cirrhosis.
A research article published on February 21, 2011 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology addresses this question. The authors described the serum vitamin D status in a retrospective case series of patients with alcoholic liver cirrhosis compared to those with primary biliary cirrhosis.
The study showed that vitamin D deficiency is more frequent and severe in patients with alcoholic liver cirrhosis than in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis. Furthermore, it indicated that the degree of liver dysfunction, rather than the aetiology of cirrhosis, dictates the risk of vitamin D deficiency.
This study emphasizes the importance of monitoring vitamin D levels in all patients with cirrhosis. However, further studies are needed to find the most favourable form of vitamin D supplementation for these patients.
1.Malham M, Jørgensen SP, Ott P, Agnholt J, Vilstrup H, Borre M, Dahlerup JF
Vitamin D deficiency in cirrhosis relates to liver dysfunction rather than aetiology
World Journal of Gastroenterology,
Department of Medicine V (Hepatology and Gastroenterology), Aarhus University Hospital, DK-8000, Aarhus C, Denmark.