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Clin Infect Dis. 2011 Feb 1;52(3):396-405. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciq158.

Low vitamin D among HIV-infected adults: prevalence of and risk factors for low vitamin D Levels in a cohort of HIV-infected adults and comparison to prevalence among adults in the US general population.

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  • 1Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.



we explored serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D) levels and associated factors for insufficiency or deficiency in an adult human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) cohort and compared 25(OH)D levels with those in the general US population.


using baseline data from the Study to Understand the Natural History of HIV and AIDS in the Era of Effective Therapy (SUN), a prospective, observational cohort study of HIV-infected adults enrolled at 7 HIV specialty clinics in 4 US cities from March 2004 to June 2006, we estimated the prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency (defined as 25(OH)D levels <30 ng/mL), standardized by age, race, and sex. Using multiple logistic regression, we examined risk factors for vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency.


among 672 SUN participants with baseline serum 25(OH)D determinations who were not receiving vitamin D supplements, 70.3% (95% confidence interval [CI], 68.1%-74.9%) were vitamin D insufficient or deficient, compared with 79.1% (95% CI, 76.7-81.3) of US adults. Factors associated with vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency included black race (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 4.51; 95% CI, 2.59-7.85), Hispanic ethnicity (aOR, 2.78; 95% CI, 1.31-5.90), higher body mass index (aOR, 1.04; 95% CI, 1.00-1.09), hypertension (aOR, 1.88; 95% CI, 1.10-3.22), lack of exercise (aOR, 3.14; 95% CI, 1.80-5.47), exposure to efavirenz (aOR, 1.98; 95% CI, 1.18-3.34), higher exposure to ultraviolet light (aOR, .78; 95% CI, .71-.86), renal insufficiency (aOR, .55; 95% CI, .36-.83), and exposure to ritonavir (aOR, .56; 95% CI, .35-0.89).


similar to findings in US adults generally, vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency is highly prevalent among HIV-infected adults and is associated with known risk factors. Observed associations of vitamin D levels with renal insufficiency and with use of ritonavir- and efavirenz-containing regimens are consistent with both HIV-related and therapy-mediated alterations in vitamin D metabolism. Clinicians should consider screening all patients for vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency.

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