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The association between hypovitaminosis D and pediatric allergic diseases: A Korean nationwide population-based study

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There is still considerable disagreement regarding the role of vitamin D in the development or exacerbation of allergic diseases.


To investigate the association between serum vitamin D levels and recent symptoms of allergic diseases in elementary schoolchildren.


A nationwide cross-sectional survey was conducted in children ages 6‐7 years from 45 randomly selected elementary schools. The presence of atopic dermatitis (AD) or asthma was defined as medical treatment of children for AD or asthma within 12 months of the survey. The presence of allergic rhinitis (AR) was defined as medical treatment for AR during the past 12 months and a positive skin test response. Current AD was defined as confirmed eczema on physical examination. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D) was measured by chemiluminescent immunoassay.


Questionnaire data and blood samples were collected from 3720 children. The overall prevalence rates of vitamin D insufficiency (20‐29 ng/mL) and deficiency (<20 ng/mL) were 64.0% and 18.4%, respectively. For a 1 ng/mL decrease in 25(OH)D, the adjusted odds ratio (aOR) for AR was 1.020 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.002‐1.040) and the aOR for current AD was 1.027 (95% CI, 1.006‐1.047). For each 1 ng/mL decrease in 25(OH)D, the aOR for positive skin-prick test reactivity was 1.013 (95% CI, 1.000‐1.027). No significant association between vitamin D level and the prevalence of asthma was observed.


A high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency was found in Korean elementary schoolchildren, and low vitamin D levels were associated with recent symptoms of AD and AR.
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Keywords: Allergic rhinitis; asthma; atopic dermatitis; children; eczema; sensitization; vitamin D

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 3Department of Pediatrics, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea

Publication date: July 1, 2016

More about this publication?
  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma and by having the potential to directly impact the quality of patient care. AAP welcomes the submission of original works including peer-reviewed original research and clinical trial results. Additionally, as the official journal of the Eastern Allergy Conference (EAC), AAP will publish content from EAC poster sessions as well as review articles derived from EAC lectures.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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