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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The prevalence of hypovitaminosis D and secondary hyperparathyroidism in obese Black Americans.

Context Both obesity (body mass index, BMI >/= 30 kg/m(2)) and Black race are associated with a higher risk of vitamin D deficiency and secondary hyperparathyroidism. We hypothesized the risk of hypovitaminosis D would therefore be extraordinarily high in obese Black adults. Objective To study the effects of race and adiposity on 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] and parathyroid hormone (iPTH). Design, Setting and Participants Cross-sectional study of 379 Black and White adults from the Washington D.C. area. BMI ranged from 19.9 to 58.2 kg/m(2). Main Outcome Measures Prevalence of hypovitaminosis D [25(OH)D < 37.5 nmol/l] and secondary hyperparathyroidism [25(OH)D < 37.5 nmol/l with iPTH > 4.2 pmol/l]. Results Obese Black subjects had lower mean 25(OH)D, 40.3 (SD, 20.3) nmol/l, compared with obese Whites, 64.5 (29.7), P < 0.001, nonobese Blacks, 53.3 (26.0), P = 0.0025 and nonobese Whites, 78.0 (33.5), P < 0.001. The prevalence of hypovitaminosis D increased with increasing BMI, and was greater (P < 0.001) in Blacks than Whites within all BMI categories examined. Among subjects with BMI >/= 35 kg/m(2), 59% of Blacks vs 18% of Whites had hypovitaminosis D (odds ratio 6.5, 95% confidence interval 3.0-14.2). iPTH was negatively correlated with 25(OH)D (r = -0.31, P < 0.0001), suggesting those with hypovitaminosis D had clinically important vitamin D deficiency with secondary hyperparathyroidism. For secondary hyperparathyroidism 35.2% of Blacks met the criteria, compared to 9.7% of Whites (OR 3.6, CI 1.5-98.8). Conclusions Obese Black Americans are at particularly high risk for vitamin D deficiency and secondary hyperparathyroidism. Physicians should consider routinely supplementing such patients with vitamin D or screening them for hypovitaminosis D.[1]


  1. The prevalence of hypovitaminosis D and secondary hyperparathyroidism in obese Black Americans. Yanoff, L.B., Parikh, S.J., Spitalnik, A., Denkinger, B., Sebring, N.G., Slaughter, P., McHugh, T., Remaley, A.T., Yanovski, J.A. Clin. Endocrinol. (Oxf) (2006) [Pubmed]
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