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16% of exclusively breastfed infants so low on vitamin D that they had rickets – June 2010

Vitamin D Status of term exclusively breastfed infants and their mothers from India.

Acta Paediatr. 2010 Jun 7.
Agarwal N, Faridi MM, Aggarwal A, Singh O.
Department of Pediatrics, University College of Medical Sciences, University of Delhi, New Delhi, India.

Objectives: (i)To measure 25-OH vitamin D levels in term infants at 10 weeks and 6 months and to correlate with maternal vitamin D levels at 10 weeks postpartum (ii)To evaluate infants at 6 months for rickets.

Patients and Methods: 179 exclusively breastfed infant-mother pairs 96 appropriate-for-gestational age (Group1) and 83 small- for- gestational age infants (Group 2) recruited at 10 weeks. At 6 months 52 in group 1and 45 in group 2 were evaluated. Venous blood sample were collected at 10 weeks and 6 months in infants and at 10weeks in mothers for calcium, phosphorus, alkaline phosphatase and 25-OH vitamin D estimation.

Results: Mean 25-OH vitamin D levels of infants (n=97) were 11.55+/-7.17ng/ml at 10 weeks and 16.96+/-13.33ng/ml at 6 months (p<0.001). Mean vitamin D levels of infants in group 1 and group 2 did not differ at recruitment and 6 months (P>0.05)). Maternal vitamin D levels in group 1 and group 2 were 8.89+/- 5.97 and 9.87+/- 6.44 ng/ml respectively (P=0.44). Significant correlation was observed between 25-OH vitamin D of infants and mothers (P<0.05). At 10 weeks 55.67% infants, 70% mothers and at 6 months 44.33% infants had vitamin D <11ng/ml. At 6 months 16.49% infants developed rickets.

Conclusions: Exclusively breastfed infants and their mothers are Vit D deficient, hence the need to improve vitamin D status .

See also VitaminDWiki