The effect of anti epileptic drug therapy on serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D and parameters of calcium and bone metabolism--a longitudinal study

Seizure. 2010 Apr;19(3):153-8. doi: 10.1016/j.seizure.2010.01.006. Epub 2010 Feb 7.


Background: Chronic antiepileptic drug use is associated with bone loss. We sought to assess the longitudinal effect of antiepileptic drug on serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] levels and bone mineral metabolism markers.

Methods: Patients in the emergency services or those in neurology outpatient department with history of seizure were characterized and included in the study prospectively. Daily dietary intake of calories, calcium, phosphorus and phytates were characterized by dietary recall method. Base line bone mineral parameters - serum calcium, phosphorus, alkaline phosphatase (SAP), tartrate resistant acid phosphatase (TRACP), 25(OH)D levels, parathyroid hormone (PTH) and urinary calcium creatinine ratio (Ca.Cr), urinary calcium/kg/bodyweight (BW) and phosphate excretion index (PEI) were determined. Patients on AED therapy with normal 25(OH)D levels were followed up and were re-evaluated at the end of 6 months.

Results: The daily dietary calcium intake of the subjects was lower than the RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance) by ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research). The diet was high in phytates. Two-thirds of the recruited subjects were vitamin D deficient. Subjects with normal 25(OH)D levels at base line showed a significant fall of 25(OH)D levels, urinary calcium, urinary calcium/kg/BW and TRACP levels at the end of 6 months irrespective of the AED used or the plasma level of AED.

Conclusions: Hypovitaminosis D is common in our population. Subjects with normal 25(OH)D levels, irrespective of the type of antiepileptic medications even at sub-therapeutic serum levels of the drug, went into 25(OH)D deficiency and insufficiency states. Theoretically it can be worthwhile to supplement calcium and vitamin D even before initiation of antiepileptic therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anticonvulsants / adverse effects*
  • Bone and Bones / drug effects*
  • Calcium / metabolism
  • Calcium, Dietary
  • Child
  • Diet
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Seizures / blood*
  • Seizures / drug therapy
  • Vitamin D / analogs & derivatives*
  • Vitamin D / blood
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / blood
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / chemically induced*
  • Young Adult


  • Anticonvulsants
  • Calcium, Dietary
  • Vitamin D
  • 25-hydroxyvitamin D
  • Calcium