Sunday, November 16, 2014

Vitamin D deficiency rampant in neuromuscular diseases, study shows

This report was posted in the Chicago Tribune. A study by two Pennsylvania doctors shows that people suffering from neuromuscular diseases have a high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency, the Newswise news service reported Friday. The results were presented at the annual meeting of the American Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine in Savannah, Ga.

"Previous work has shown vitamin D deficiency to be quite common in other neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis, myasthenia gravis and Parkinson's disease. This study suggests this concern may be more prevalent in other neuromuscular conditions as well," said Dr. Ileana Howard, a member of the association's editorial board.

"While the connection between vitamin D deficiency and neurologic disease is likely complex and not yet fully understood, this study may prompt physicians to consider checking vitamin D levels in their patients with neurologic conditions and supplementing when necessary," Howard added.

The use of vitamin D supplements has been suggested previously to improve function in frail elderly patients at risk for falls and also for people with myasthenia gravis and Parkinson's. Whether vitamin D deficiency and supplementation play a role in other neurologic conditions requires more research, Newswise reported.

The study was conducted in Hershey, Pa., by Drs. Sankar Bandyopadhyay and Sol Dejesus.

Beyond vitamin supplements, sunshine is one of the best sources of vitamin D, but sun exposure plummets for most of the country during the winter. Good food sources include fatty fish like wild salmon, cod liver oil, beef liver, orange juice or milk fortified with vitamin D, and eggs.

MyAchingKnees comment: I would have liked to see this study talk about blood levels of Vitamin D and in relation to how much Vitamin D the patients are consuming each day. My wife was taking 900 IU of Vitamin D each day, which is more than twice the FDA recommended daily allowance (RDA) and yet he blood tests showed that she was Vitamin D deficient. We added 2,000 more IU and now her blood levels of Vitamin D are above normal. I take 4,900 IU of Vitamin D. 900 IU with my daily supplements plus two 2,000 IU tablets.

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