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J Elder Abuse Negl. 2006;18(4):63-78.

Vitamin D deficiency associated with self-neglect in the elderly.

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CREST, University of Texas Medical School--Houston, University of Texas Health Science Center--San Antonio Division of General Internal Medicine, 78229-3901, USA.



Vitamin D deficiency is common in elders. However, little is known about the implications of vitamin D deficiency in elder self-neglect.


To characterize a group of self-neglecting elders with vitamin D deficiency based on clinical, cognitive, and functional status. Participants. Forty-four self-neglecting elders referred by the Adult Protective Services.


Vitamin D status of the self-neglecting elders was based upon serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OHD). Demographics, cognitive, and functional characteristics of vitamin D deficient self-neglecting elders were described and compared to those without vitamin D deficiency.


Vitamin D deficiency (25-OHD < 25 nmol/L) was detected in 16 out of 44 self-neglecting elders (36%). Self-neglecting elders with vitamin D deficiency had lower scores in the Physical Performance Test and higher scores in the Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills, compared with those who were not vitamin D deficient (p = 0.014 and p = 0.018 respectively).


Vitamin D deficiency is common in elder self-neglect. Self-neglecting elders with vitamin D deficiency have impaired physical performance and inadequate living skills, which can be potentially improved by treating vitamin D deficiency.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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