International

Vitamin D deficiency linked to diabetic retinopathy

The findings detailed in the Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology were based on a meta-analysis of people with diabetes from the US, Japan, Iran, India, Italy, China and the Netherlands.{{quote-A:R-W:450-Q:Those with DR had considerably lower serum vitamin D levels than people who did not have the condition.}}The individuals, all aged 18 and above, were assessed for both vitamin D deficiency and DR, which revealed those with DR had considerably lower serum vitamin D levels than people who did not have the condition.Vitamin D has long been known as useful for treating inflammation and also the formation of new blood vessels, but according to the report the role it plays in DR has been “obscured in clinical studies by disease pathogenesis, varied diabetic retinopathy classifications, and differing patient ethnic populations.”The meta-analysis also confirmed that a person’s latitudinal location has an influence over the production of vitamin D under the skin.Those found living close to the equator had significantly higher vitamin D levels compared to those living south or north of the equator.However, despite establishing a “significant association” between DR and a lack of vitamin D, as well as a “statistically significant difference” in the mean serum vitamin D levels of people with and without the condition, the scientists said more research was needed.Specifically, more needed to be done to explore the “definitive causal role of vitamin D deficiency and the development of DR” and whether vitamin D supplents could be used as a “protective mechanism against the development and progression of DR.”

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