From the Journals

Sickle cell patients with vitamin D deficiency prone to more ED visits, longer stays



Patients with sickle cell disease (SCD) plus vitamin D deficiency were found to have more hospitalization outcomes, including number of emergency department (ED) visits, the number of hospital admissions for pain crisis, and the length of hospital admission, according to a study published online by researchers from New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital.

A cluster of sickle cell anemia blood cells. Dr_Microbe/Thinkstock

The researchers performed a retrospective chart review of all 134 pediatric patients with SCD (aged 1-21 years) from January 2015 to January 2016 in an urban-based hospital setting. Ninety patients with at least one reported vitamin D level who maintained follow-up during the time studied were enrolled. Hospitalization rates were compared between vitamin D deficiency (< 20 ng/mL) and sufficiency (> 20 ng/mL) patients.

When compared to patients with SCD and sufficient vitamin D levels, patients with both SCD and vitamin D deficiency were more likely to have at least one ED visit (P < .01), at least one admission for pain crisis (P < .01), and a longer length of admission (P < .0001), the researchers found.

“Screening and treatment for vitamin D deficiency is generally cost effective and readily available, potentially having a significant impact on the quality of life for those living with sickle cell disease,” the researchers concluded.

The authors reported that there was no study funding and that they had no conflicts of interest.

SOURCE: Brown B et al. Blood Cells Mol Dis. 2020. doi: 10.1016/j.bcmd.2020.102415.

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