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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.

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

Low levels of calcium or vitamin D, which is more important in systemic lupus erythematosus patients? An extensive data analysis. Calcium levels may play a significant role in the SLE disease process, more than originally thought, since SLE patients are at a higher risk for hypocalcaemic events. Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology Online, 09/01/2016. (Also see Research on Systemic Lupus Erythematosus)

Vitamin D, disease activity and comorbidities in early spondyloarthritis. In early axial spondyloarthritis vitamin D deficiency was associated with higher disease activity and severity and presence of metabolic syndrome. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol, 04/05/2016. (Also see Ankylosing Spondylitis)

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)

Deficiencies of Vitamin D

Association between serum vitamin D levels and neuropathic pain (NP) in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients: A cross–sectional study. Although further research is needed to clarify the association between serum vitamin D levels and NP, our study raises awareness of the need to screen for vitamin D deficiency in RA patients with NP. PubMed, Int J Rheum Dis, 08/31/2017. (Also see Symptoms and Complications of Rheumatoid Arthritis)

Bone and Celiac Disease. Adequate calcium and vitamin D supplementation are also recommended to optimize bone recovery, especially during the first years of gluten free diet. Springer Link, 02/13/2016. (Also see Celiac Disease)

Vitamin D deficiency common in patients with lung disease. in this study there was a high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in individuals with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), as well as a significant relationship between vitamin D deficiency and airflow limitations. Eureka, 04/20/2015.

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)

Scleroderma and Vitamin D Deficiencies

Systemic Sclerosis Patients Found to Have Low Vitamin D Levels, Reduced Bone Mineral Density & Total Mineral Content. Findings suggest that skin thickness in SSc patients could be one factor in determining low circulating levels of vitamin D that in turn could play a significant role in the reduction of bone mineral density and total mineral content. Scleroderma News, 09/23/2015.

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

How Sunlight Affects Your Mental Health. A new study suggests just how much sunlight really matters to our emotional and mental health, more than any other weather phenomenon. Time Healthland, 11/07/2016.

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.

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.

Vitamin D supplements are not effective, and could be dangerous, studies find. There is a lack of evidence to support the health benefit claims of virtually all vitamin supplements on the market. Science Alert, 01/11/2016. (Also see Scleroderma Supplement Guide)

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