Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels among Boston trainee doctors in winter
Medical Staff, Hospital
Vitamin D Deficiency
As indoor workers, trainee doctors may be at risk for inadequate vitamin D. All trainee doctors (residents) in a Boston pediatric training program (residency) were invited to complete a survey, and undergo testing for serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D], PTH, and calcium during a 3-week period in March 2010. We examined the association between resident characteristics and serum 25(OH)D using Chi2 and Kruskal-Wallis test and multivariable linear and logistic regression. Of the 119 residents, 102 (86%) participated. Although the mean serum 25(OH)D level was 67 nmol/L (±26), 25 (25%) had a level <50 nmol/L and 3 (3%) residents had levels <25 nmol/L. In the multivariable model, factors associated with 25(OH)D levels were: female sex (β 12.7, 95% CI 3.6, 21.7), white race (β 21.7, 95% CI 11.7, 31.7), travel to more equatorial latitudes during the past 3 months (β 6.3, 95% CI 2.0, 10.5) and higher daily intake of vitamin D (β 1.1, 95% CI 0.04, 2.1). Although one in four residents in our study had a serum 25(OH)D <50 nmol/L, all of them would have been missed using current Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) screening guidelines. The use of traditional risk factors appears insufficient to identify low vitamin D in indoor workers at northern latitudes.