Dose-Response Effects of Early Vitamin D Supplementation on Neurodevelopmental and Respiratory Outcomes of Extremely Preterm Infants at 2 Years of Age: A Randomized Trial

Academic Article


  • Background: Many extremely preterm infants have low vitamin D concentrations at birth, but early childhood outcomes after vitamin D supplementation have not been reported. Objective: To determine a dose-response relationship between increasing doses of enteral vitamin D in the first 28 days after birth and cognitive scores at 2 years of age. Methods: In this phase II double-blind dose-response randomized trial, infants with gestational ages between 23 and 27 weeks were randomly assigned to receive placebo or a vitamin D dose of 200 or 800 IU/day from day 1 of enteral feeding to postnatal day 28. The primary outcome of this follow-up study was Bayley III cognitive score at 22-26 months of age. Results: Seventy of 80 survivors had a follow-up evaluation at 2 years of age (88%). There were no significant differences in cognitive scores between supplementation groups (p = 0.47). Cognitive scores did not differ between the higher vitamin D dose group and the placebo group (median difference favoring the 800 IU group: +5 points; 95% CI: -5 to 15; p = 0.23). The linear trend between increasing doses of vitamin D and reduction of neurodevelopmental impairment (placebo group: 54%; 200 IU group: 43%; 800 IU group: 30%; p = 0.08) or language impairment (placebo group: 64%; 200 IU group: 57%; 800 IU group: 45%; p = 0.15) was not statistically significant. Respiratory outcomes at 2 years of age (need for supplemental oxygen or asthma medications) did not differ between groups. Conclusion: In extremely preterm infants, early vitamin D supplementation did not significantly improve cognitive scores. Though underpowered for clinically meaningful differences in early childhood outcomes, this trial may help determine dosing for further investigation of vitamin D supplementation.
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    Author List

  • Salas AA; Woodfin T; Phillips V; Peralta-Carcelen M; Carlo WA; Ambalavanan N
  • Start Page

  • 256
  • End Page

  • 262
  • Volume

  • 113
  • Issue

  • 3