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J Pediatr. 2001 Jun;138(6):851-5.

Treatment of vitamin K deficiency in cystic fibrosis: Effectiveness of a daily fat-soluble vitamin combination.

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  • 1Division of Gastroenterology/Nutrition, The Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Ave., Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5G 1X8.



Patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) and pancreatic insufficiency (PI) commonly have vitamin K deficiency, and those with CF-associated liver disease (CFLD) have universal vitamin K deficiency. We evaluated the effectiveness of an oral fat-soluble vitamin combination (ADEKs) to treat patients with vitamin K deficiency.


Patients with PI and CF (mean age, 15 years; range, 0.6 to 46 years) including 6 with advanced CFLD were prospectively enrolled in a study of a fat-soluble vitamin combination taken on a daily basis. None had received vitamin K supplementation for at least 4 months before the study. Fat-soluble vitamin combination supplementation was given for a minimum of 4 months; the mean vitamin K intake was 0.18 mg/d (SD = 0.1, range, 0 to 0.3). The primary outcome was change in plasma PIVKA-II (prothrombin in vitamin K absence).


Before supplementation 58 (81%) of 72 patients had abnormal PIVKA-II levels (>2.9 ng/mL). After supplementation 29 (40%) had abnormal PIVKA-II levels (P =.001). All 6 patients with advanced CFLD had abnormal PIVKA-II levels (median, range of 20.8, 5.5 to 55 ng/mL) before treatment, which corrected to normal in 50% (4.1, 2.1 to 65 ng/mL). Four patients, 2 with CFLD, had a prolonged prothrombin time (>13.5 seconds) at both time periods.


An oral fat-soluble vitamin combination with a modest amount of vitamin K can, as a daily supplement, improve the PIVKA-II levels in patients with PI and CF.

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