Aim: To investigate the effect of vitamin D (VD) concentrations and VD supplementation on health related quality of life in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients.
Methods: A cohort of 220 IBD patients including 141 Crohn's disease (CD) and 79 ulcerative colitis (UC) patients was followed-up at a tertiary IBD center. A subgroup of the cohort (n = 26) took VD supplements for > 3 mo. Health related quality of life was assessed using the short IBD questionnaire (sIBDQ). VD serum concentration and sIBDQ score were assessed between August and October 2012 (summer/autumn period) and between February and April 2013 (winter/spring period). The mean VD serum concentration and its correlation with disease activity of CD were determined for each season separately. In a subgroup of patients, the effects of VD supplementation on winter VD serum concentration, change in VD serum concentration from summer to winter, and winter sIBDQ score were analyzed.
Results: During the summer/autumn and the winter/spring period, 28% and 42% of IBD patients were VD-deficient (< 20 ng/mL), respectively. In the winter/spring period, there was a significant correlation between sIBDQ score and VD serum concentration in UC patients (r = 0.35, P = 0.02), with a trend towards significance in CD patients (r = 0.17, P = 0.06). In the winter/spring period, VD-insufficient patients (< 30 ng/mL) had a significantly lower mean sIBDQ score than VD-sufficient patients; this was true of both UC (48.3 ± 2.3 vs 56.7 ± 3.4, P = 0.04) and CD (55.7 ± 1.25 vs 60.8 ± 2.14, P = 0.04) patients. In all analyzed scenarios (UC/CD, the summer/autumn period and the winter/spring period), health related quality of life was the highest in patients with VD serum concentrations of 50-59 ng/mL. Supplementation with a median of 800 IU/d VD day did not influence VD serum concentration or the sIBDQ score.
Conclusion: VD serum concentration correlated with health related quality of life in UC and CD patients during the winter/spring period.
Keywords: Crohn’s disease; Health related quality of life; Ulcerative colitis; Vitamin D; Vitamin D supplementation.