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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 53-58

Assessment of vitamin D status in different samples of an elderly Egyptian population

1 Department of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt
2 Biochemistry Unit, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Abeer Ahmed
Department of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, 11361
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ejode.ejode_4_17

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Introduction Vitamin D is one of the important hormones involved in Ca homeostasis. It is also essential for the prevention of osteoporosis and fractures. Vitamin D is important for maintaining many physiologic functions, such as optimal balance, muscle strength, and innate immunity. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with an increased risk for several types of cancer, as well as autoimmune and cardiovascular disorders. As the influence of diet on vitamin D status is minimal and most circulating vitamin D is derived from exposure to sunlight, elderly populations are greatly affected; they have marked limitations that hinder their exposure to sunlight as well as their feeding and nutritional habits. Objectives of the study The aim of this study was to assess vitamin D status in Egyptian geriatric, homebound, nursing home residents, and ambulatory elderly individuals. Patients and methods This study was carried out on 90 elderly male and female individuals divided into three groups: the first group included 30 homebound elderly individuals, the second group included 30 elderly individuals living in nursing homes, and the third group included 30 community-dwelling ambulatory elderly individuals. Results There were high statistically significant difference in the vitamin D levels between the groups studied, being the highest in group III, 158 (18–240) nmol/l, and the lowest in group II, 16 (4–194) nmol/l. Statistically significant differences were found in sun exposure, with good exposure in 60% of the individuals in group III. There were also statistically significant differences in the intake of vitamin D in diet, with good intake in 64.30% of the individuals in group III. Also, we found the highest waist circumference in group II (98.68±20.73 cm). Vitamin D showed a significant positive correlation with serum calcium in group II (ρ=0.199) and a positive correlation with aspartate transaminase (AST) in group III (ρ=0.418). Conclusion Elderly Egyptian individuals in nursing houses are at risk of developing vitamin D deficiency because of lack of exposure to sunlight, dietary problems, and or central obesity.

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