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Vitamin D deficiency in HIV-infected patients: a systematic review

Authors Giusti A, Penco, Pioli G

Published 29 November 2011 Volume 2011:3 Pages 101—111


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Andrea Giusti1, Giovanni Penco2, Giulio Pioli3
1Bone Clinic, Department of Gerontology and Musculoskeletal Sciences, Galliera Hospital, Genoa, Italy; 2Department of Infectious Diseases, Galliera Hospital, Genoa, Italy; 3Department of Geriatrics, ASMN Hospital, Reggio Emilia, Italy

Abstract: Advances in the diagnosis and management of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) have resulted in a dramatic decrease in mortality in HIV-infected individuals (HIV+). The subsequent increase in life expectancy of HIV+ has led to the need to consider the long-term complications of the disease and its treatment. Abnormalities in vitamin D status and metabolism are increasingly recognized as a major concern in HIV infection. In the last 5 years a number of cross-sectional and prospective studies have suggested a high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in HIV+. Although few case-control studies have been published, it has been suggested that the prevalence of hypovitaminosis D in HIV+ is higher than in the general population, and at least in part, is related to the course of the disease and/or the antiretroviral drugs used to treat the disease. An adequate vitamin D status is important not only for bone tissue, but also for the global health status of HIV+ individuals, since a growing body of evidence has demonstrated the detrimental effects of vitamin D deficiency on multiple health outcomes. Therefore, definition of the size of the problem and identification of effective protocols for the prevention and management of vitamin D deficiency in HIV+ patients represent important steps in improving health status and reducing long-term chronic complications in individuals with HIV. Due to its immunomodulatory effects, vitamin D may also have implications in the progression of HIV infection. This systematic review was designed to determine the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in HIV+ patients; to identify risk factors (related to the HIV infection or not) potentially associated with this condition; to describe the potential consequences of hypovitaminosis D on the course of the infection and the benefits of vitamin D repletion; and to make some suggestions about the future, considering the limitations of previous studies.

Keywords: human immunodeficiency virus, HIV, vitamin D, parathyroid hormone, bone, antiretroviral

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