Dr Paul Lee, Professor John Eisman and Associate Professor Jackie Center, researchers at Sydney's Garvan Institute of Medical Research, examined a cohort of 42 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) patients. Forty-five percent turned out to be Vitamin D deficient.
"Until now, the medical community has thought of Vitamin D deficiency as a chronic condition," said Dr Lee. "Little is known about its acute complications."
"Last year, we published several cases showing that Vitamin D deficiency can cause acute complications in the intensive care unit."
"Recently, Vitamin D has been recognised for its many roles beyond the musculoskeletal system. It has been implicated in diabetes, in the immune system, in cancers, in heart disease and in metabolic syndrome."
"Vitamin D appears to have roles in controlling sugar, calcium, heart function, gut integrity, immunity and defence against infection. Patients in ICU suffer from different degrees of inflammation, infection, heart dysfunction, diarrhoea and metabolic dysregulation