(HealthDay News) — For critically ill patients in intensive care units (ICUs) with vitamin D deficiency, vitamin D3 treatment has minimal health benefits, according to a study published online September 30 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study was published to coincide with the annual meeting of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine, held from September 27 to October 1 in Barcelona, Spain.
Karin Amrein, MD, from the Medical University of Graz in Austria, and colleagues examined the health benefit of a vitamin D3 treatment regimen for patients in ICUs. Critically ill adult white patients with vitamin D deficiency were randomized to receive vitamin D3 (237 patients) or placebo (238 patients).
The researchers observed no significant between-group difference in the median length of hospital stay (20.1 days for vitamin D3 and 19.3 days for placebo; P=0.98). There was also no significant difference in hospital mortality (28.3 vs. 35.5%; P=0.18) or in six-month mortality (35.0 vs. 42.9%; P=0.09). In subgroup analysis, length of hospital stay and six-month mortality were not significantly different for the severe vitamin D deficiency subgroup, but hospital mortality was significantly lower with vitamin D3 (28.6 vs. 46.1%; hazard ratio, 0.56; P for interaction=0.04).
“Among critically ill patients with vitamin D deficiency, administration of high-dose vitamin D3 compared with placebo did not reduce hospital length of stay, hospital mortality, or six-month mortality,” the authors write.
Several authors disclosed financial ties to Fresenius Kabi, which provided the study medication and funding.