Vitamin D Deficiency Found in Adolescents with Serious Mental Disorders

October 28, 2011 · Posted in Risk Factors 

Vitamin DBarbara Gracious of the University of Rochester Medical Center reported at the 57th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) in October 2010 that adolescents with severe mental illness are more likely to have vitamin D deficiency than adolescents in the general population are. Gracious et al. collected information from severely mentally ill teens in inpatient and day hospital settings. Low vitamin D levels (i.e. those below 30 ng/ml) were found in 74% of these children. In addition, those patients who were vitamin D deficient were more than three times as likely to have a psychotic element to their illness.

Editor’s note:  These data suggest the potential importance of assessing vitamin D levels during the diagnosis of patients with childhood-onset bipolar disorder, particularly if there is associated psychotic symptomatology.

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