Research published this month in Chest reports that vitamin D deficiency in combination with increased serum vitamin B12 increases risk of mortality in critically ill patients.
Dr Puneet Khanna and colleagues included 1460 patients admitted to the medical or surgical intensive care unit, excluding those on prior vitamin D or B12 supplementation.
The authors observed vitamin D deficiency (<20 ng/mL) in 70.6% of patient. Eighty-one percent of patients had an increased serum vitamin B12 level. Both D deficiency and increased B12 status were present in 61.3% of patients. These patients showed greater APACHE II and SOFA scores (used to evaluate severity of illness), greater ventilator requirement, and higher 30-day mortality (P<0.0001).
In conclusion the authors explain,
“Vitamin D deficiency and high serum Vitamin B12 levels at admission were significant independent predictors of mortality in critically ill patients… Mortality was greater when both the factors were together present. Serum Vitamin D and Vitamin B12 levels should be regularly monitored in critically ill patients.”