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Allergy. 2013 Jul;68(7):906-10. doi: 10.1111/all.12167. Epub 2013 Jun 10.

Low vitamin D serum level is inversely associated with eczema in children and adolescents in Germany.

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Medical Sociology, Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany.



Recent studies have yielded heterogeneous results regarding the relationship between vitamin D and atopic conditions. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between serum vitamin D level and the prevalence of eczema in German children and adolescents.


Data were drawn for children aged 1-17 from the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS), a nationwide cross-sectional representative survey. 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) serum concentration was measured in 9838 individuals with eczema and categorized into quartiles. We investigated the association of vitamin D level and eczema by means of logistic regression models.


Weighted prevalence of eczema was 13.5% (95% confidence interval (CI) 12.6-14.4%). Mean vitamin D level was significantly higher in those with eczema compared with those without (P < 0.0001). Logistic regression revealed an inverse association between low levels of vitamin D and eczema (multivariate OR for quartile 1 vs quartile 2: 0.76 (95% CI 0.61-0.94)).


This study suggests that low serum vitamin D level is inversely associated with eczema in German children and adolescents. Prospective studies are required to confirm this result, to discuss a potential opportunity for prevention of eczema.


atopy; eczema; epidemiology; vitamin D

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