Vitamin D3 supplements do not benefit severe Covid-19 patients, study reveals

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on November 23, 2020

A team of researchers at the University of São Paulo in Brazil intended to find whether vitamin D3 supplementation could help in the reduction of hospital duration for severe Covid-19 patients.

The researchers found that taking vitamin D3 was safe and effective in increasing 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels. However, it did not reduce hospital length of stay or yield any other clinically-relevant outcomes compared with a placebo.

For the study, published in the journal medRxiv*, the team conducted a multi-centre, double-blind, randomised and placebo-controlled trial in two centres. They analysed 240 critically ill Covid-19 hospitalised patients.

In the randomised trial, the team assigned patients to receive either a single oral dose of 200,000 IU of vitamin D3 or a placebo.

Study outcomes

The team has found that of the 240 randomized patients, vitamin D supplementation markedly increased serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels compared to placebo.

The supplement increased the serum vitamin D levels in 86.7 per cent of the patients, compared to 11 per cent in the placebo group.

The researchers noted: “There were no changes in any health-related laboratory markers following the intervention. Vitamin D3 supplementation was well tolerated, and no severe adverse events were reported throughout the trial.”

However, vitamin D3 supplementation is ineffective in improving hospital length of stay or any other clinical outcomes among hospitalised patients with severe Covid-19.

“Thus, this trial does not support the use of vitamin D3 supplementation as an adjuvant treatment of patients with Covid-19,” the team concluded.

Published on November 23, 2020

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