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Lab tests to measure vitamin D levels may play an important role in the care of trauma patients, as a new study indicates that a percentage of these individuals may have dangerously low levels of the nutrient.
The finding is particularly concerning because vitamin D plays an important role in the formation of new bone tissue. Many individuals who have been admitted to a hospital due to trauma may have experienced broken bones, so low levels of vitamin may impair their recovery.
For the study, researchers from the University of Missouri examined the medical records of close to 2,000 patients treated in the trauma center of the school's medical facility. The results showed that 77 percent of these individuals had deficient or insufficient vitamin D levels.
"Although we've gone to treating most patients with weekly high dose vitamin D, in addition to daily vitamin D and calcium, continual monitoring of vitamin D levels is important," said Dr. Brett Crist, who led the study. "Vitamin D deficiency affects patients of all ages and is more prevalent than we thought it was."
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