Vitamin D deficiency among children with epilepsy in South Queensland

J Child Neurol. 2014 Mar;29(3):368-73. doi: 10.1177/0883073812472256. Epub 2013 Jan 22.


This study evaluated prevalence and risk factors for vitamin D deficiency among children with epilepsy on long-term antiepileptic drugs treated in South Queensland, Australia. Children with epilepsy seen in a tertiary neurology clinic were contacted requesting bone health blood tests during winter of 2011. Vitamin D deficiency was defined as 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels <20 ng/mL, and insufficiency between 21 and 29 ng/mL. One hundred thirty letters were sent, with 111 (85%) subsequently having blood tests performed. Vitamin D deficiency was identified in 24 (22%) of 111 and an additional 45 (41%) of 111 had vitamin D insufficiency. Multiple logistic regression analysis identified children on >2 antiepileptic drugs or with underlying genetic etiologies were more likely to have vitamin D deficiency. High proportion of children on long-term antiepileptic drugs in Queensland risk vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency despite living in the subtropics. Vitamin D monitoring and supplementation is important in the management of children on long-term antiepileptic drugs requiring tertiary care in Queensland.

Keywords: antiepileptic drugs; bone health; epilepsy; vitamin D deficiency.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anticonvulsants / therapeutic use
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Epilepsy / blood
  • Epilepsy / drug therapy
  • Epilepsy / epidemiology*
  • Epilepsy / genetics
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Queensland / epidemiology
  • Risk Factors
  • Tertiary Healthcare
  • Vitamin D / blood
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / blood
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / drug therapy
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / epidemiology*


  • Anticonvulsants
  • Vitamin D