Is there a place for vitamin D supplementation in the treatment of MS?

Vitamin D supplementation reduces relapse rate in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis patients treated with natalizumab

Laursen JH, Søndergaard HB, Sørensen PS, Sellebjerg F, Oturai AB.

Mult Scler Relat Disord 2016; 10:169-173.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Vitamin D insufficiency is common among multiple sclerosis patients, and hypovitaminosis D has been associated with multiple sclerosis (MS) risk and disease activity.

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate how recommendations on vitamin D3 supplements affect 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) levels in patients with relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) and to examine the clinical effects associated with changes in 25(OH)D levels.

METHODS:

In this prospective cohort study, baseline blood samples were collected from 170 natalizumab-treated RRMS patients during winter 2009-2010 and were repeated the following winter. Vitamin D supplements were recommended according to standard clinical practice in our clinic to patients with serum 25(OH)D<50nmol/l at baseline. Information was obtained on annualized relapse-rate (ARR) the year prior to baseline and the following year.

RESULTS:

We found that recommending vitamin D supplements in patients with vitamin D insufficiency was associated with a significant increase in serum 25(OH)D concentrations (p=5.1×10-10), which was significantly related with decreases in ARR; for each nmol/l increase in Δ25(OH)D a -0.014 (95% CI -0.026 to -0.003) decrease in ΔARR was observed, p=0.02.

CONCLUSION:

Correction of hypovitaminosis D in clinical practice by recommending oral D3 supplements resulted in increases in 25(OH)D levels in serum, which were associated with decreases in annual relapse rate in MS.

This reference is now included in the neurochecklist:

Multiple sclerosis (MS): general treatment

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Abstract link

Vitamin D pills. Essgee51 on Flikr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/sg51/5224823967
Vitamin D pills. Essgee51 on Flikr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/sg51/5224823967
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