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Minerva Pediatrica 2017 May 04

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4946.17.04847-2


language: English

Associations of seasonal patterns and vitamin D levels with onset and flares of pediatric inflammatory bowel disease

Yael BRANDVAYMAN 1, Firas RINAWI 2, Raanan SHAMIR 1, 2, Amit ASSA 1, 2

1 Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel; 2 Institute of Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Liver Disease, Schneider Children’s Medical Center, Petach-Tikva, Israel


BACKGROUND: As inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) might be associated with environmental factors such as seasonal patterns and low vitamin D levels we aimed to assess their association with IBD onset and flares in a large cohort of children.
METHODS: The records of 623 pediatric onset IBD patients were reviewed retrospectively including age at onset, gender, severity indices, month of first symptom, and vitamin D levels at diagnosis. For a subgroup of patients, data included date of first flare and vitamin D levels during flare and remission.
RESULTS: Median age at diagnosis was 14 years (IQR 11.66 - 15.58). Disease onset did not vary significantly between either month (p=0.367) or seasons (p=0.460). Vitamin D deficiency at the time of diagnosis was prevalent in 21% of patients with no significant association with month, season or disease's type. Vitamin D deficiency was significantly more prevalent in patients with malnutrition (p<0.001) and was associated with hypoalbuminemia (p=0.02) but did not correlate with low bone mineral density. Analysis of 169 first flares showed that flares were more common in June and less common in April (p=0.016). Mean vitamin D level was significantly lower during flares compared with remission (55.25±19.28 vs. 64.16±26.6, respectively, p=0.012).
CONCLUSIONS: IBD onset in school aged children is not associated with seasonal patterns whereas flares may follow a specific monthly pattern. Disease flares are associated with low vitamin D blood levels. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with malnutrition and hypoalbuminemia.

KEY WORDS: Crohn's disease - Ulcerative colitis - Seasonality

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