Background: The changes in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) in adolescents from summer to winter and optimal serum vitamin D levels in the summer to ensure adequate vitamin D levels at the end of winter are currently unknown. This study was conducted to address this knowledge gap.
Methods: The study was conducted as a cohort study. Sixty-eight participants aged 7-18 years and who had sufficient vitamin D levels at the end of the summer in 2011 were selected using stratified random sampling. Subsequently, the participants' vitamin D levels were measured at the end of the winter in 2012. A receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve was used to determine optimal cutoff points for vitamin D at the end of the summer to predict sufficient vitamin D levels at the end of the winter.
Results: The results indicated that 89.7% of all the participants had a decrease in vitamin D levels from summer to winter: 14.7% of them were vitamin D-deficient, 36.8% had insufficient vitamin D concentrations and only 48.5% where able to maintain sufficient vitamin D. The optimal cutoff point to provide assurance of sufficient serum vitamin D at the end of the winter was 40 ng/mL at the end of the summer. Sex, age and vitamin D levels at the end of the summer were significant predictors of non-sufficient vitamin D at the end of the winter.
Conclusions: In this age group, a dramatic reduction in vitamin D was observed over the follow-up period. Sufficient vitamin D at the end of the summer did not guarantee vitamin D sufficiency at the end of the winter. We found 40 ng/mL as an optimal cutoff point.
Keywords: 25-hydroxyvitamin D; adolescents; children; vitamin D deficiency.