JOURNAL ARTICLE

Effect of oral vitamin E supplementation in children with cholestasis

Rawiwan Roongpraiwan, Umaporn Suthutvoravut, Belen Feungpean, Pornpimon Phuapradit
Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand 2002, 85: S1199-205
12549795

OBJECTIVE: Malabsorption and deficiency of vitamin E are common consequences of chronic cholestasis. The objective of this study was to determine vitamin E status by using plasma vitamin E/total lipid ratio (E/L) in children with cholestasis during supplementation with 20 IU/kg/day and 100 IU/kg/day of oral vitamin E capsule, and 50 IU/kg/day of cold water soluble form (CWSIF) of vitamin E.

METHOD: Children with cholestasis who were being supplemented with 20 IU/kg/day of oral vitamin E capsule (dl-alpha-tocopherol) were enrolled into this study. After initial evaluation for vitamin E status and liver function, doses of oral vitamin E supplementation were increased to 100 IU/kg/day for 1 month. Then, supplementation was switched to 50 IU/kg/day of CWS/F vitamin E for 1 month. Vitamin E status was assessed by using plasma E/L after each period of supplementation.

RESULTS: Eleven children with biliary atresia, aged between 2 and 18 months, were studied. Their median weight standard deviation score (SDS) was -1.35 and median height SDS was -1.26. The medians of serum direct bilirubin and total bilirubin were 6.5 and 12.9 mg/dl, respectively. Only 2 and 3 out of 9 children had plasma E/L above normal cut-off levels during supplementation with 20 and 100 IU/kg/day of vitamin E capsule, respectively. Additionally, 4 of 9 children had plasma E/L above normal cut-off level after one month's supplementation with 50 IU/kg/day of CWS/F vitamin E. All the responders had serum bilirubin levels less than 4 mg/dl while the remainder with serum direct bilirubin level more than 4 mg/dl had their plasma E/L below normal cut-off levels in spite of any vitamin E supplementation.

CONCLUSION: Oral vitamin E supplementation with 20 IU/kg/day and 100 IU/kg/day of vitamin E capsule and with 50 IU/kg/day of CWS/F vitamin E were able to normalize vitamin E status in a few cholestatic children who had serum direct bilirubin levels less them 4 mg/dl. In cases of serum direct bilirubin more than 4 mg/dl, neither of vitamin E supplementations was able to correct the vitamin E deficiency status.

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