Vitamin D deficiency and its effect on respiratory distress syndrome in premature infants: results from a prospective study in a tertiary care centre

  • Pelin Dogan
  • Hilal Ozkan
  • Nilgun Koksal
  • Onur Bagci
  • Ipek Guney Varal
Keywords: 25-hydroxyvitamin D; prematurity; respiratory distress syndrome.


Background: The positive effects of steroids on lung development are well known, and 1,25-dihydroxy vitamin D3 has been shown to exert positive effects on fetal lung development.

Objective: We aimed to investigate the relationship between 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] levels and respiratory distress syn- drome (RDS) in premature infants.

Methods: Infants aged ≤32 gestational weeks who were admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) during 1 year were enrolled in this prospective study. 25(OH)D levels were obtained at the time of admission to NICU. Patients were divided into three groups according to their 25(OH)D levels: severe (group 1), moderate (group 2), and mild (group 3) 25(OH)D deficiencies.

Results: The study comprised 72 patients; of them, RDS was observed in 49 and not observed in 23 patients. The mean 25(OH)D levels were significantly lower in RDS patients (p=0.04). Multivariate analysis showed that patients with higher 25(OH)D levels can be preventive for the development of RDS (odds ratio 0.89; 95% confidence interval 0.8–0.99; p=0.04).

Conclusion: Our study revealed that 25(OH)D deficiency is an independent risk factor for RDS in premature infants. However, further studies are necessary to explore the association between 25(OH)D deficiency and RDS.

Keywords: 25-hydroxyvitamin D; prematurity; respiratory distress syndrome. 


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eISSN: 1680-6905