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25-11-2010 | Dermatology | Article

Children with atopic dermatitis have low vitamin D levels


Free abstract

MedWire News: Study findings show that children with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis (AD) have significantly lower levels of vitamin D than those with a mild forms of the condition.

"These data suggest that vitamin D deficiency may be related to the severity of atopic dermatitis and advocate the need for studies evaluating the use of vitamin D as a potential treatment in patients with this disease," say Diego Peroni (University of Verona, Italy) and colleagues.

The researchers recruited 37 children with AD between the age of 8 months and 12 years to assess their levels of vitamin D.

They used the severity scoring of atopic dermatitis (SCORAD) index to determine AD severity, with 15, 13, and 9 children diagnosed as having mild (SCORAD score <25), moderate (SCORAD 25-50), or severe (SCORAD >50) AD. Serum levels of 25 hydroxyvitamin D (vitamin D) were measured using a chemiluminescent method.

The team found that vitamin D levels were significantly higher in children with mild compared with moderate or severe AD, at 36.9 versus 27.5 and 20.5 ng/ml, respectively.

"Our data, showing a correlation between vitamin D deficiency and severity of AD in children, seem to support previous epidemiological observations suggesting a possible inverse association between vitamin D nutritional intake or exposure to the sun, and AD disease prevalence," comment the authors in the British Journal of Dermatology.

"Further studies considering more patients and evaluating other confounding variables, such as race, age, atopy, gender, family atopic diseases, are requested. Finally, longitudinal studies on oral vitamin D supplementation in large cohorts of patients are necessary to establish the optimal doses and actions to be taken as potential treatment," they suggest.

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2010

By Helen Albert

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