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Vitamin D deficiency associated with worse outcomes in those with acute myeloid leukemia

Posted on: October 11, 2017   by  Vitamin D Council


A recent study published by the International Journal of Hematology-Oncology and Stem Cell Research found that vitamin D deficiency was highly prevalent and associated with worse outcomes in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML).

A total of 65 individuals with AML were included in this study. Researchers evaluated the participant’s vitamin D status at baseline and after completing 28 days of chemotherapy treatment. Medical data, anthropometric data and demographics were also collected from medical charts. The patients were divided into two groups based on their vitamin D status. Group 1 had levels below 20 ng/ml and group 2 had levels above 20 ng/ml.

This is what the researchers found:

  • A total of 81.5% of patients had levels <20 ng/ml, while 13.8% and 4.7% of patients had levels between 20.1 – 29.9 ng/mL and ≥30 ng/ml, respectively.
  • There was no significant difference in the baseline characteristics of patients with and without vitamin D deficiency, except for alkaline phosphatase (ALP), which was higher in those with vitamin D deficiency (p=0.04). Alkaline phosphatase is a liver enzyme, with higher levels in the blood indicating liver problems.
  • Higher vitamin D levels were associated with higher rates of remission and shorter hospital stays (p = 0.04).

The researchers concluded:

“In conclusion, we found that deficiency in serum 25(OH)D levels was highly prevalent in Iranian AML patients. Furthermore, higher Vit D level in AML patients was associated with its better outcome.”


Seyedalipour, F. et al. High Prevalence of Vitamin D Deficiency in Newly Diagnosed Acute Myeloid Leukemia Patients and Its Adverse Outcome. International Journal of Hematology-Oncology and Stem Cell Research, 2017.


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