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Association of White Matter Hyperintensities with Low Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Levels.

Prager JM, Thomas C, Ankenbrandt WJ, Meyer JR, Gao Y, Ragin A, Sidharthan S, Hutten R, Wu YG. (2014) AJNR Am J Neuroradiol.   2014, Jan 16. [Epub ahead of print] 

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Vitamin D deficiency is associated with cognitive impairment in the elderly and with increased white matter T2 hyperintensities in elderly debilitated patients. We investigated the relationship between serum vitamin D and brain MR findings in adult outpatients.


Brain MR studies of 56 patients ages 30-69 years were selected when vitamin D level had been obtained within 90 days of the MRI. White matter T2 hyperintensities were characterized by size and location by two neuroradiologists. Manual volumetric analysis was assessed in patients more than 50 years of age.


The entire cohort showed a significant negative relationship between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D and the number of confluent juxtacortical white matter T2 hyperintensities (P = .047). The cohort ages 50 years and older showed stronger correlation between confluent white matter T2 hyperintensities and serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the juxtacortical region; number (P = .015) and size of white matter T2 hyperintensities (P = .048). Atrophy was not significantly related to serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D by radiologist visual analysis or by the bicaudate ratio.


We found a significant relationship between vitamin D and white matter T2 hyperintensities in independent adult outpatients, especially over the age of 50 years.