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Free Content Prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in adult tuberculosis patients at a central hospital in Malawi [Short communication]

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Vitamin D deficiency (VDD) is associated with impaired mycobacterial immunity and susceptibility to tuberculosis (TB). We measured 25 hydroxy vitamin D levels in 161 adult TB patients at a central hospital in Malawi, of whom 120 (74.5%) had ≤75 nmol/l (hypovitaminosis D), 68 (42%) had ≤50 nmol/l (VDD) and 13.6% of in-patients and 6.8% of out-patients had ≤25 nmol/l (severe VDD). In-patients had lower body mass index (BMI; 19.0 vs. 20.5, P < 0.004), and vitamin D levels were lower in those with BMI < 20. However, on multiple regression analysis in-patient status and BMI were not associated with vitamin D level. We conclude that VDD is common in adult TB patients in Malawi. In this small sample, it was not possible to identify any independent associations of VDD.

Keywords: Africa; HIV; cross-sectional study; tuberculosis; vitamin D deficiency

Document Type: Short Communication

Affiliations: 1: College of Medicine, University of Malawi, Blantyre, Malawi 2: Department of Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Malawi, Blantyre, Malawi

Publication date: 2011-03-01

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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