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New Vitamin D Study Launched

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Our hospital Emergency Department has started a research study to get a clear picture of how many patients aged over 65 have Vitamin D deficiency.


Consultant Emergency Physician Dr Adam Reuben, who is leading this study, said: “It has long been recognised that Vitamin D deficiency causes problems with bone health. In children this may present as Rickets, which manifests itself as soft bones that may become deformed. Adults may be subject to an increased risk of broken bones through a condition called Osteomalacia. New evidence is now suggesting that there may be other more global negative effects on health and wellbeing including increased risk of falls through muscle weakness, dementia, heart disease, diabetes and some cancers.”


“The reason we are taking part in a study to look at the prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency on patients we see who are over 65 years old is because a significant proportion of our patients fall into this category and we recognise that this is a growing problem that goes mostly undiagnosed with far reaching implications. We anticipate that almost half of the patients who we test will have some degree of vitamin D deficiency. Some of this may be easily treated with simple lifestyle changes.”


The study is called INVITED – Investigation of Vitamin D Deficiency in Emergency Department. 


Dr Reuben added: “We hope the data we collate for this study will highlight the extent of the problem and raise public awareness about the consequences of vitamin D deficiency, but perhaps more importantly the ease with which it can be treated. Most people who have low levels of vitamin D will be unaware of it. They may also be unaware that by simple changes to their diet, such as eating oily fish, and exposure to sunshine, the body can make its own vitamin D.”


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