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Pharmacy 2014, 2(1), 40-49; doi:10.3390/pharmacy2010040
Review

A Review of Vitamin D Deficiency in the Critical Care Population

1,2
,
2
 and
2,*
1 Walgreens Pharmacy, Dallas, Texas, TX 75204, USA 2 Department of Clinical Pharmacy, University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy, Memphis, TN 38163, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 September 2013 / Revised: 8 November 2013 / Accepted: 22 November 2013 / Published: 9 January 2014
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Abstract

It is well documented that a large percentage of the general population is either vitamin D insufficient or deficient. Vitamin D deficiency adversely affects bone health. More recently, it has been reported that vitamin D is an important component in immune function and glycemic control Substantial data exist that demonstrate an association between vitamin D insufficiency/deficiency and mortality/clinical outcomes of critically ill patients. The larger clinical trials addressing this association have demonstrated an increased odds ratio for mortality in both vitamin D insufficient and deficient patients when compared to those with sufficient vitamin D. There is also some evidence that vitamin D status worsens during critical illness without supplementation of this vitamin. Supplementation of vitamin D during critical illness of patients with vitamin D deficiency has been studied, but not in great detail. Daily supplementation of the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin D does very little to improve the 25(OH)D serum concentrations in the critically ill patients with vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency. There is some evidence that high-dose therapy of vitamin D improves the depressed serum concentrations of this vitamin; however, there are no clinical outcome data available yet. The association between vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency and clinical outcome in the critically ill appears to be important. Supplementation of vitamin D will increase the serum concentrations of this vitamin; however the optimal dose needs to be identified along with an assessment of clinical outcome.
Keywords: vitamin D; critical illness; ergocalciferol; cholecalciferol vitamin D; critical illness; ergocalciferol; cholecalciferol
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).
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Massey, K.; Dickerson, R.N.; Brown, R.O. A Review of Vitamin D Deficiency in the Critical Care Population. Pharmacy 2014, 2, 40-49.

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