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Vitamin D supplements doesn’t prevent severe asthma flares in children

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Vitamin D3 supplements did not prolong the time to a severe asthma exacerbation in children with asthma and low serum vitamin D levels, according to a study in JAMA.

In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, high-risk children with asthma (6 to 16 years old) taking low-dose inhaled corticosteroids and with serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels less than 30 ng/mL, were randomized to receive vitamin D3, 4000 IU/d or placebo for 48 weeks and maintained with fluticasone propionate, 176 μg/d in children 6 to 11 years old, or 220 μg/d in children 12-16 years old.

In total, 37.5% and 34.4% of patients in the vitamin D3 group and the placebo group, respectively, had ≥1 severe exacerbation. Vitamin D3 supplementation did not significantly improve the time to a severe exacerbation compared to placebo.

Time to a viral-induced severe exacerbation, the proportion of participants whose dose of inhaled corticosteroid was reduced, or the cumulative fluticasone dose during the trial, was not significantly improve with vitamin D3 supplementation, compared with placebo.

Serious adverse events occurred in 11 patients in the vitamin D 3 group and 9 patients in the placebo group.

Forno E, Bacharier LB, Phipatanakul W, et al. Effect of Vitamin D3 Supplementation on Severe Asthma Exacerbations in Children With Asthma and Low Vitamin D LevelsThe VDKA Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA. 2020;324(8):752–760. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.12384