Prevalence and Risk Factors for Vitamin D Insufficiency Among Children With Epilepsy

Renée A. Shellhaas, Amanda K. Barks, Sucheta M. Joshi

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42 Scopus citations


This cross-sectional study was designed to determine the prevalence of, and risk factors for, vitamin D insufficiency among children treated for epilepsy in a general pediatric neurology clinic. Included were 78 children with epilepsy, aged 3-17 years, treated by the authors between September 2008 and March 2009. Vitamin D levels and relevant risk factors were evaluated using multiple logistic regression. Of the 78 children, 41% were male and 81% were of European origin; the mean age was 11.64 ± 4.37 years. 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels of <20 ng/mL were observed in 25% of the children and levels considered to be normal (>32 ng/mL) were observed in only 25%. Girls and children with elevated body mass index were at increased risk for low 25-hydroxyvitamin D. The odds ratio for low 25-hydroxyvitamin D was 4.07 for girls versus boys, with a 95% confidence interval of 1.18-13.97; for each 1-unit increase in body mass index, the odds ratio was 1.179, with a 95% confidence interval of 1.047-1.329. Use of newer antiepileptic drugs was not associated with altered risk, compared with older enzyme-inducing drugs. Vitamin D insufficiency was highly prevalent in this unselected population of children with epilepsy. Female sex and increased body mass index were significant risk factors for low vitamin D levels, but antiepileptic drug regimen was not.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)422-426
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric Neurology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was funded in part by the Child Health Research Career Development Award no. NIH 5 K12 HD 028820 17 (R.A.S.).


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