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Vitamin D Deficiency, Sunshine, and Scleroderma

Overview
Autoimmune Diseases
Deficiencies of Vit D
Scleroderma and Vit D
Sunshine Exposure
Supplementation

Overview

Kaleidoscope Sun by Shelley EnszVitamin D's major biological function is to maintain normal blood levels of calcium and phosphorus. Recent studies have demonstrated that individuals with low blood levels of vitamin D are at a higher risk of developing autoimmune diseases.

Vitamin D and autoimmunity. A review of the experimental, epidemiological and clinical studies illustrating the potential role of vitamin D in the development and perpetuation of autoimmune diseases. PubMed, Rev Med Interne, 2012 Feb;33(2):87-93.

Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Vitamin D. Information about the popular supplement from Office of Dietary Supplements. National Institutes of Health. (Also see Supplements)

Autoimmune Diseases and Vitamin D

How a daily supplement could guard against HIV: Vitamin D. High doses of vitamin D may be able to stave off HIV infections, scientists believe. Mail Online, 06/18/2015.

Vitamin D status in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients: relation to clinical manifestations, disease activity, quality of life (QoL) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). Special attention is required regarding vitamin D levels in RA patients with FMS and decreased QoL. Vitamin D should be corrected and supplementation considered among the RA management armamentarium. PubMed, Int J Rheum Dis, 2014 Oct 7. (Also see Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatments, Fibromyalgia and Vitamin D Deficiency)

Low vitamin D level is not associated with increased incidence of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Vitamin D levels were not associated with the development of RA in this patient population with matched controls. PubMed, Rheumatol Int, 2014 Apr 19. (Also see Rheumatoid Arthritis)

Vitamin D May Ease Fibro Pain. Patients who think they are deficient in the nutrient should consult their doctor first, experts say. WebMD, 01/17/2014. (Also see Fibromyalgia)

Vitamin D supplementation, moderate sun exposure, and control of immune diseases. There is considerable debate about the benefits of vitamin D supplementation for multiple sclerosis, allergic asthma, and type 1 diabetes. Randomized controlled trials of vitamin D supplementation to treat these (and other) diseases have been disappointing. Discov Med, 2012 Jun;13(73):397-404.

Deficiencies of Vitamin D

Vitamin D Deficiency Linked More Closely to Diabetes than Obesity. Vitamin D deficiency and obesity interact synergistically to heighten the risk of diabetes and other metabolic disorders. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 02/23/2015. (Also see Prevention of Diabetes)

Vitamin D and Calcium Supplements May Not Prevent Fractures. For most people, the evidence doesn't support any bone benefit of the popular supplements. Time Healthland 02/26/2013. (Also see Scleroderma Supplement Guide: Calcium)

Vitamin D Supplementation: What's Known, What to Do, and What's Needed. In patients with documented vitamin D deficiency, a cumulative dose of at least 600,000 IU administered over several weeks appears to be necessary to replenish vitamin D stores. Single large doses of 300,000-500,000 IU should be avoided. Pharmacotherapy, 2012 Apr;32(4):354-82.

Scleroderma and Vitamin D Deficiencies

Vitamin D receptor (VDR) regulates TGF–ß signalling in systemic sclerosis (SSc). Impaired VDR signalling with reduced expression of VDR and decreased levels of its ligand may thus contribute to hyperactive TGF–ß signalling and aberrant fibroblast activation in SSc. Ann Rheum Dis, 2015;74:e20.

Sunshine Exposure and Protection

Sunbathers take heed: skin damage continues hours after exposure. Here's a warning to sunbathers everywhere. Scientists have found that the skin damage caused by UV rays does not stop once you get out of the sun. Reuters, 02/19/2015.

Safe Sun Protection. For people with specific autoimmune disorders, protection from the sun should be a serious perennial consideration. Conditions such as Lupus, dermatomyositis, scleroderma and vitaligo are autoimmune diseases that are sun-sensitive. Arthritis Today.

How Vitamin D May Fight Colon Cancer. Higher levels of vitamin D have been associated with a reduced risk of colon cancer in many observational studies. New York Times, 01/15/2015.

Scientists claim artificial sunshine may be key to treating Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The study shows that UV-B light, which mimics sunshine, can have a striking effect on the immune system of patients. Scotland News. 07/17/12. (Also see Multiple Sclerosis)

Supplementation of Vitamin D

Before taking supplements of any kind, consult with your physicians. Both too little -- and too much -- Vitamin D can harm the heart.

Many Older Women Don’t Need Vitamin D Supplements. Vitamin D supplements may be ineffective in improving bone density or bone strength in postmenopausal women, a clinical trial has found. New York Times, 08/10/2015.

Study: Vitamin D Supplements Don’t Protect Against Fractures. Keeping bones strong may take more than popping a few pills, according to the latest research. Times Healthland, 10/10/2013. (Also see Scleroderma Supplement Guide)

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Copyright 1998-2015, International Scleroderma Network. AKA Scleroderma from A to Z and SCLERO.ORG. All Rights Reserved.