Kidney DiseaseVitamin D

Viamin D levels in kidney dialysis patients

Researchers from Canada and the US looked for factors that might predict patients with kidney failure who are vitamin D deficient.

First, the details.

  • 908 patients with known 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels were studied.
  • Factors that might predict the presence of a vitamin D deficiency were evaluated.

And, the results.

  • 79% of the patients were vitamin D deficient (25-hydroxyvitamin D less than 30 ng/mL).
  • Strongest predictors of vitamin D deficiency
    • Black race
    • Female sex
    • Winter season
    • Low albumin blood levels (hypoalbuminemia; blood albumin at least 3.1 g/dL)
  • The presence of hypoalbuminemia along with dialysis started during the winter was associated with 100% vitamin D deficiency in black women and black men.
    • In white women and men vitamin D deficiency was 94% and 92%, respectively.

The bottom line?

The authors concluded, “Deficiency of 25-hydroxyvitamin D is nearly universal among patients with hypoalbuminemia initiating chronic hemodialysis in winter.”

It’s not proven, say the authors, that correcting these factors will benefit these patients clinically.

3/1/10 18:58 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.