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The prevention of vitamin D deficiency in the elderly






Scottish Medical Journal 31(3): 144-149

The prevention of vitamin D deficiency in the elderly

Vitamin D deficiency is common in the house-bound and institutionalized elderly population of Britain. A study of patients over 65 years discharged with a diagnosis of osteomalacia from Greater Glasgow Health Board [Scotland, UK] hospitals between 1970 and 1981 inclusive showed a low incidence in the 65 to 74 years age group but a steeply rising incidence in older age groups. The majority (83%) of patients were female. The fortification of margarine, butter and milk with concentrations of vitamin D acceptable to the general population does not produce significant elevations in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OHD) levels in vitamin D-deficient elderly patients. Low intensity background ultraviolet radiation (UVR) and intermittent high intensity UVR produce significant elevations in serum 25-HD levels in elderly patients but both methods have disadvantages which limit their widespread use. Vitamin D supplements equivalent to 10 .mu.g daily produce significant elevations in serum 25-OHD levels in vitamin D-deficient elderly patients. A vitamin D supplement policy for the housebound and institutionalized elderly population of Britain is required.


Accession: 006740658

PMID: 3798077



Related references

Toss, G.A.dersson, R1; Diffey, B1; Fall, P.1; Larko, O., 1982: UV ultra-violet-irradiation or oral vitamin D for the prevention of vitamin D deficiency in the elderly?. Vitamin D chemical biochemical and clinical endocrinology of calcium metabolism: proceedings of the Fifth Workshop on Vitamin D Williamsburg VA USA February 1982 editors AW Norman et al: -1169

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Brubacher, G., 1989: Vitamin deficiency in the elderly. Its impact on health and its prevention. Bibliotheca Nutritio et Dieta: 60-75

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