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Children who wheezed were 2.7X more likely to have little vitamin D – April 2014

Subnormal levels of vitamin D are associated with acute wheeze in young children

Acta Paediatrica, DOI: 10.1111/apa.12666
Katarina Stenberg Hammar 1,2,*, Gunilla Hedlin 1,2, Jon R. Konradsen1,2, Björn Nordlund1,2, Inger Kull3,4, Christian G. Giske5, Christophe Pedroletti6, Cilla Söderhäll7 andErik Melén3,8
1Astrid Lindgren Children′s Hospital, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden
2Department of Women′s and Children′s Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
3Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
4Department of Clinical Science and Education, Södersjukhuset, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
5Clinical Microbiology, MTC, Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden
6Department of Women′s and Childrens′s Health, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
7Department of Biosciences and Nutrition, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
8Sachs′Children′s Hospital, Södersjukhuset, All belong to The Centre for Allergy Research at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
* Address correspondence to: Katarina Stenberg Hammar, Allergy Research Unit, Astrid Lindgren Children′s Hospital, Karolinska University Hospital, Solna, SE-171 76 Stockholm, Sweden. katarina.stenberg-hammar at karolinska.se]Tel: + 46 70 780 34 38

This study evaluated risk factors for acute wheeze in preschool children and investigated if subnormal levels of vitamin D were associated with increased risk for acute wheeze, atopy or viral/bacterial respiratory infections.

We recruited 130 children with acute wheeze, aged six months to four years, from paediatric emergency departments in Stockholm, Sweden, and 101 age-matched controls with no history of wheeze or sensitisation to airborne allergens. Parents answered standardised questionnaires and blood samples were analysed for specific IgE to airborne and food allergens and levels of 25 hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D). Nasopharyngeal virus samples were collected during the emergency department visit in the group of children with wheeze and a subset were also tested for bacteria.

Vitamin D insufficiency (25(OH)D <75nmol/L (30 ng/mL) was associated with an odds ratio of 2.7 (95% confidence interval 1.1-6.2) for acute wheeze. However, no association was found between vitamin D insufficiency and atopy, presence of virus or bacteria or recurrent infections. Children older than 24 months were particularly at risk of subnormal vitamin D levels, irrespective of wheezing history.

Our findings support the hypothesis that subnormal levels of vitamin D are associated with acute wheeze in young children.

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