Vitamin and mineral status in patients with inflammatory bowel disease

Razan H Alkhouri, Humaira Hashmi, Robert D Baker, Daniel Gelfond, Susan S Baker
Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition 2013, 56 (1): 89-92

OBJECTIVES: Patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are at risk for vitamin and mineral deficiencies because of long-term inflammation in the gut mucosa and decreased oral intake. The aim of the study is to investigate the prevalence of vitamin and zinc deficiencies in patients with newly diagnosed IBD compared with a control group.

METHODS: This is a retrospective chart review of all of the patients diagnosed as having IBD from 2006 to 2010, ages 1 to 18 years. Patients who had fat- and water-soluble vitamins (A, E, D 25-OH, folate, and B(12)) and zinc levels obtained at time of diagnosis were included in the study. A total of 61 patients with IBD and 61 age- and sex-matched controls were included.

RESULTS: None of the 61 patients with IBD had folate or vitamin B12 deficiency. Vitamin D deficiency was found in 62% of the patients, vitamin A deficiency in 16%, vitamin E deficiency in 5%, and zinc deficiency in 40%. The control group had vitamin D and E and zinc deficiency in 75%, 8%, and 19% patients, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that vitamin B12 and folate deficiencies are rare in children with newly diagnosed IBD in the United States and we question whether routine monitoring is warranted. Vitamin A and zinc deficiency are common in patients with newly diagnosed IBD and levels should be assessed at the time of diagnosis so that enteral repletion can commence. Vitamin D deficiency is common in all of the children in the Buffalo, NY, area, and routine screening for this deficiency is warranted.

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