Pediatric Alopecia Areata Severity Linked to Serum Vitamin D

HealthDay News — For pediatric patients with alopecia areata, vitamin D is negatively correlated with disease severity, number of patches, and disease duration, according to a study published online in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology.

Mehmet Unal, MD, and Gulsum Gonulalan, MD, from the Konya Numune Hospital in Turkey, examined vitamin D status in 20 pediatric patients with alopecia areata and 34 pediatric healthy controls. The authors assessed the correlation between vitamin D status and disease severity, number of patches, and disease duration.

The researchers found that the mean serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration was 15.47±7.66 and 11.09±10.53 ng/mL in patients and controls, respectively; no statistically significant difference was seen between the groups (P =.084). Significant, negative correlations were seen for vitamin D concentration with the Severity of Alopecia Tool score (P <.001; r, -0.831), number of patches (P <.001; r, -0.989), and disease duration (P <.001 and r, -0.997).

Vitamin D deficiency is not the only etiologic factor in alopecia areata pathogenesis, but in the presence of other etiological factors, this deficiency can aggravate alopecia areata severity, and thus, vitamin D supplementation may be beneficial in treatment of pediatric alopecia areata,” the authors write.

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Unal M, Gonulalan G. Serum vitamin D level is related to disease severity in pediatric alopecia areata [published online April 26, 2017]. J Cosmet Dermatol. doi:10.1111/jocd.12352