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Tags: vitamin | d | icu | survival

Vitamin D Boosts ICU Survival

Thursday, 05 April 2012 12:20 PM EDT

A little sunshine – or at least a vitamin D supplement – may boost the survival odds of critically ill patients in hospital intensive care units, according to a new study by Tel Aviv researchers.
A team of doctors led by Howard Amital, of Tel Aviv University's Sackler Faculty of Medicine and Sheba Medical Center, found that ICU patients who had a vitamin D deficiency lived an average of about 9 days less than those who were found to have sufficient levels of the “sunshine vitamin.” The study, published in the journal QJM: An International Journal of Medicine, also indicated vitamin D levels correlated with the level of white blood cells, which fight disease.
Amital said the findings strongly suggest giving critically ill patients vitamin D as a way to boost survival.
Scientists have long believed that vitamin D, which is naturally absorbed from sunlight, has an important role in the functioning of the body's autoimmune system.
For the new study, the researchers tracked 130 patients over the age of 18 admitted to an intensive care unit of a TAU-affiliated hospital. The patients were divided into two groups based: Those who had 20 nanograms or more of vitamin D concentrations —defined by the National Institutes of Health as sufficient — and with lower levels. In total, 107 patients suffered from vitamin D deficiency.
After six months, researchers found patients with sufficient vitamin D survived an average of 24.2 days; those deficient in vitamin D survived an average of only 15.3 days.

© HealthDay

The 'sunshine vitamin' increases critically ill ICU patients' chances of survival.
Thursday, 05 April 2012 12:20 PM
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