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Vitamin D-ficiency common among orthopaedic surgery
Date:10/6/2010

) or even secondary hyperparathyroidism (increased secretion of the parathyroid hormone) in the most severe cases," said Dr. Lane, who is also a professor of orthopedic surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York. "This was very disconcerting since vitamin D levels can be determined with a simple blood test and low levels can be easily treated with supplements in just a few weeks."

When results were broken down by orthopaedic service area, researchers uncovered a surprising finding: Despite having the youngest mean population (age 45 14.9 years), the Sports Medicine group of patients had the second-highest rate of vitamin D insufficiency (52 percent) exceeded only by patients in the Trauma group (66.1 percent). The remaining groups had insufficiency levels of 40 percent (Hand), 38 percent (Arthroplasty), 34 percent (Foot and Ankle) and 18.6 percent (Metabolic Bone Disease).

The researchers noted that their results are consistent with those of similar studies investigating the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in the general population, including identification of risk factors including obesity and dark skin tone.

"This study should serve as a wake-up call to orthopedists that vitamin D deficiency is widespread, not necessarily tied to age, sex or background and screening for it should be part of routine pre-surgical care for adults," said Dr. Lane. "Meanwhile, patients who are planning to undergo any orthopaedic procedure can request a screening (specifically, a blood test called the 25 hydroxy Vitamin D test) or ask to be placed on a medically supervised Vitamin D supplement regimen prior to surgery."

Study specific details:

In a retrospective chart review, Dr. Lane and his colleagues measured Vitamin D levels of 723 patients who were scheduled for orthopaedic surgery between January 2007 and March 2008 and determined the prevalence of normal, insufficient and deficient levels according to the following paramete
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Contact: Lauren L. Pearson
pearson@aaos.org
847-384-4031
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Source:Eurekalert

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