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1.  Vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy: A systematic review 
1. ABSTRACT
Background
It is unclear whether the current evidence base allows definite conclusions to be made regarding the optimal maternal circulating concentration of 25(OH)-vitamin D during pregnancy, and how this might best be achieved. CRD42011001426.
Aim/ Research Questions
What are the clinical criteria for vitamin D deficiency in pregnant women?What adverse maternal and neonatal health outcomes are associated with low maternal circulating 25(OH)-vitamin D?Does maternal supplementation with vitamin D in pregnancy lead to an improvement in these outcomes (including assessment of compliance and effectiveness)?What is the optimal type (D2 or D3), dose, regimen and route for vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy?Is supplementation with vitamin D in pregnancy likely to be cost-effective?
Methods
We performed systematic review and where possible combined study results using meta-analysis to estimate the combined effect size.
Major electronic databases were searched up to June 2012 covering both published and grey literature. Bibliographies of selected papers were hand-searched for additional references. Relevant authors were contacted for any unpublished findings and additional data if necessary.
Inclusion and exclusion criteria
Subjects
Pregnant women or pregnant women and their offspring.
Exposure
Either assessment of vitamin D status (dietary intake, sunlight exposure, circulating 25(OH)-vitamin D concentration) or supplementation of participants with vitamin D or vitamin D containing food e.g. oily fish.
Outcomes
Offspring: Birth weight, birth length, head circumference, bone mass, anthropometry and body composition, risk of asthma and atopy, small for gestational dates, preterm birth, type 1 diabetes, low birth weight, serum calcium concentration, blood pressure and rickets. Mother: Preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, risk of caesarean section and bacterial vaginosis.
Results
76 studies were included. There was considerable heterogeneity between the studies and for most outcomes there was conflicting evidence.
The evidence base was insufficient to reliably answer question 1 in relation to biochemical or disease outcomes.
For questions 2 and 3, modest positive relationships were identified between maternal 25(OH)-vitamin D and 1) offspring birth weight in meta-analysis of 3 observational studies using log-transformed 25(OH)-vitamin D concentrations after adjustment for potential confounding factors (pooled regression coefficient 5.63g/10% change maternal 25(OH)D, 95% CI 1.11,10.16), but not in those 4 studies using natural units, or across intervention studies; 2) offspring cord blood or postnatal calcium concentrations in a meta-analysis of 6 intervention studies (all found to be at high risk of bias; mean difference 0.05mmol/l, 95% CI 0.02, 0.05); and 3) offspring bone mass in observational studies judged to be of good quality, but which did not permit meta-analysis.
The evidence base was insufficient to reliably answer questions 4 and 5.
Limitations
Study methodology varied widely in terms of study design, population used, vitamin D status assessment, exposure measured and outcome definition.
Conclusions
The evidence base is currently insufficient to support definite clinical recommendations regarding vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy. Although there is modest evidence to support a relationship between maternal 25(OH)-vitamin D status and offspring birth weight, bone mass and serum calcium concentrations, these findings were limited by their observational nature (birth weight, bone mass) or risk of bias and low quality (calcium concentrations). High quality randomised trials are now required.
doi:10.3310/hta18450
PMCID: PMC4124722  PMID: 25025896
2.  The administration of intermittent parathyroid hormone affects functional recovery from pertrochanteric fractured neck of femur: a protocol for a prospective mixed method pilot study with randomisation of treatment allocation and blinded assessment (FRACTT) 
BMJ Open  2014;4(1):e004389.
Introduction
Pertrochanteric hip fractures occur in an elderly population and cause considerable morbidity and loss of functional ability as the fracture heals. Recently, parathyroid hormone (PTH), which is licensed for the treatment of osteoporosis, has been shown to potentially accelerate bone healing in animal and human studies. If its administration could allow a faster functional recovery after pertrochanteric hip fracture, then a patient's hospital stay may be reduced and rehabilitation could be potentially accelerated. PTH can currently only be administered by subcutaneous injection. The acceptability of this intervention is unknown in this elderly population. The aim of this pilot study is to inform the design of a future powered study comparing the functional recovery after pertrochanteric hip fracture in patients undergoing standard care versus those who undergo administration of subcutaneous injection of PTH.
Methods and analysis
The study is an open label, prospective, randomised, comparative pilot study with blinded outcomes assessment to establish feasibility of the trial design. Patients will be randomised to receive a 6-week course of PTH or usual treatment. Functional outcomes will be assessed at 6 weeks and 12 weeks. Blinded assessment will be used to minimise the effect of bias of an open label study design. A nested qualitative study will investigate the patient experience of, and expectations following, hip fracture and the patient important aspects of recovery compared with the outcome measures proposed.
Results
Results will be analysed to establish the potential recruitment, compliance and retention rates using 95% CIs, and trial outcomes quoted with SDs and 95% CIs for the effect size.
Ethics and dissemination
The study has been approved by the South West 2 Research Ethics committee (reference 10/H0206/34). The findings of this study will be disseminated to the medical community via presentations to orthopaedic, orthogeriatric and osteoporosis societies, and their relevant specialist journals.
Trial Registration
ISRCTN Register reference number: ISRCTN03362357.
Eudract Number: 2010-020081-22
doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2013-004389
PMCID: PMC3913027  PMID: 24477319
Geriatric Medicine; Rehabilitation Medicine; Qualitative Research
3.  Defining Incident Radiographic Hip Osteoarthritis for Epidemiologic Studies in Women 
Arthritis and rheumatism  2009;60(4):1052-1059.
Objectives
To evaluate definitions of radiographic hip osteoarthritis (RHOA) for use in longitudinal epidemiologic studies of disease incidence in women.
Methods
We studied 5,839 women from the Study of Osteoporotic Fractures who had had serial pelvic radiographs obtained (mean of 8.3 years apart) and who were followed up (mean followup 7.1 years from the time of the second radiograph) for evaluation of clinical outcomes. Definitions of RHOA were assessed for construct validity (association with symptoms and signs at the time of the second radiograph) and predictive validity (association with total hip replacement [THR] and signs and symptoms a mean of 7.1 years later). Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals were calculated to assess the strength of association using logistic regression.
Results
The cumulative incidence of RHOA ranged from 2.2% to 11.7%. All definitions displayed significant construct validity; the most consistent was found for composite definitions that required the concurrent presence of 2 or more individual radiographic features and definitions based on stringent criteria for joint space narrowing. All definitions except minimum joint space ≤2.5 mm displayed consistent predictive validity. Composite definitions had the strongest associations with THR (OR 10.5–18.5) and hip pain (OR 2.6–2.9). The hips identified as having OA by each definition varied, with especially small overlap between findings using definitions based on osteophytes and those using definitions based on joint space narrowing alone.
Conclusions
Most definitions of incident RHOA display good construct and predictive validity. Composite definitions have the best overall performance, and definitions requiring the presence of both osteophytes (in particular, femoral osteophytes) and joint space narrowing would be recommended for most epidemiologic and genetic studies.
doi:10.1002/art.24382
PMCID: PMC3777428  PMID: 19333950
4.  MAVIDOS Maternal Vitamin D Osteoporosis Study: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. The MAVIDOS Study Group 
Trials  2012;13:13.
MAVIDOS is a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial (ISRCTN82927713, registered 2008 Apr 11), funded by Arthritis Research UK, MRC, Bupa Foundation and NIHR.
Background
Osteoporosis is a major public health problem as a result of associated fragility fractures. Skeletal strength increases from birth to a peak in early adulthood. This peak predicts osteoporosis risk in later life. Vitamin D insufficiency in pregnancy is common (31% in a recent Southampton cohort) and predicts reduced bone mass in the offspring. In this study we aim to test whether offspring of mothers supplemented with vitamin D in pregnancy have higher bone mass at birth than those whose mothers were not supplemented.
Methods/Design
Women have their vitamin D status assessed after ultrasound scanning in the twelfth week of pregnancy at 3 trial centres (Southampton, Sheffield, Oxford). Women with circulating 25(OH)-vitamin D levels 25-100 nmol/l are randomised in a double-blind design to either oral vitamin D supplement (1000 IU cholecalciferol/day, n = 477) or placebo at 14 weeks (n = 477). Questionnaire data include parity, sunlight exposure, dietary information, and cigarette and alcohol consumption. At 19 and 34 weeks maternal anthropometry is assessed and blood samples taken to measure 25(OH)-vitamin D, PTH and biochemistry. At delivery venous umbilical cord blood is collected, together with umbilical cord and placental tissue. The babies undergo DXA assessment of bone mass within the first 14 days after birth, with the primary outcome being whole body bone mineral content adjusted for gestational age and age. Children are then followed up with yearly assessment of health, diet, physical activity and anthropometric measures, with repeat assessment of bone mass by DXA at age 4 years.
Discussion
As far as we are aware, this randomised trial is one of the first ever tests of the early life origins hypothesis in human participants and has the potential to inform public health policy regarding vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy. It will also provide a valuable resource in which to study the influence of maternal vitamin D status on other childhood outcomes such as glucose tolerance, blood pressure, cardiovascular function, IQ and immunology.
doi:10.1186/1745-6215-13-13
PMCID: PMC3395865  PMID: 22314083
Vitamin D; cholecalciferol; supplementation; trial; osteoporosis; DXA; pregnancy; neonate
5.  Subchondral bone attrition may be a reflection of compartment-specific mechanical load: the MOST Study 
Annals of the rheumatic diseases  2009;69(5):841-844.
Introduction
Subchondral bone attrition (SBA), a feature of osteoarthritis, may be caused by excess focal load to bone, and/or inadequate bone quality to withstand loads through the joint. This study evaluated the effects of malalignment, which can cause focal excessive load, and systemic bone density on the presence and incidence of SBA.
Methods
The Multicenter Osteoarthritis Study is a cohort of individuals who have or are at high risk of knee osteoarthritis. Baseline alignment and bone mineral density (BMD) measures were assessed. Baseline and 30-month knee magnetic resonance images were graded for SBA (grade 0–3) using the whole-organ magnetic resonance imaging score. The study evaluated the association of alignment in medial and lateral compartments, respectively, and systemic BMD with baseline presence of SBA and incident SBA using logistic regression and adjusting for age, sex and body mass index.
Results
Of 1253 participants (mean age 62 years, mean BMI 30, 61% women), 33% had baseline SBA and 44% had knee osteoarthritis. Associations between the presence and incidence of SBA with malalignment in both compartments were noted (odds ratios (95% CI) 2.9 (2.1 to 4.0) and 1.9 (1.2 to 2.9), respectively, for varus knees in the medial compartment; 4.5 (2.8 to 7.1) and 2.1 (1.1 to 4.1), respectively, for valgus knees in the lateral compartment). Low BMD was not associated with SBA.
Conclusions
The presence and incidence of SBA are associated with malalignment in a compartment-specific manner, but not with low BMD. SBA may be a marker of increased load experienced by overlying cartilage, which may contribute to increased forces transmitted to the cartilage due to alteration in subchondral bone.
doi:10.1136/ard.2009.110114
PMCID: PMC2891513  PMID: 19762366

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