Well, the role of Vitamin D in slowing down the progression of Multiple Sclerosis is turning out to be controversial and puzzling

We posted as recently as March 1, 2012

IN BRIEF: High Dose Vitamin D Not Effective Against Multiple Sclerosis  [1]

Now there came to our view a study of the fundamentals of the effect of Vitamin D on MS

Brain ; “Immunomodulatory effects of Vitamin D in multiple sclerosis” ;  Jan 2009 [2]

That study concludes :”…correction of its deficiency may be useful during treatment of the disease…”

Two comments:

  1. The study discussed in  [1] was published in February 2012, and consisted of a “double-blind randomized controlled trial.”

The study was on a small cohort of 35 ambulatory MS patients.
No mention was made of the type of MS: Relapsing Remitting (RRMS), Secondary Progressive (SPMS), Primary Progressive (PPMS)

  1. The study [2] is dated 2009, 3 years earlier. It consists of comparing MS patients level of  forms of vitamin D in the blood serum, and noted that:

“[Vitamin D] levels in patients suffering relapse were lower than during remissions. and overall lower than in a control group not afflicted with MS… In contrast, primary progressive patients showed similar values to controls…”

Vitamin D as Cholecalciferol-

Those are two very different studies:
Study [1] ignores the MS Types, and is about high dose supplementation
Study [2] is not about supplementation, just observed lower Vitamin D level during relapse of RRMS patients.  Significantly the level of vitamin D was the same as in healthy patients for the PPMS group!
These results suggest two things:
  • If vitamin D supplementation is going to be helpful at all, it would be in the prevention or early RRMS phase which are more about inflammation
  • Supplementation of a nutrient for diseases lacking in that nutrient needs proof of success.
  • Vitamin D supplementation during advanced SPMS and PPMS , which is more about neurodegeneration, might not be helpful since study [2] did not find a lower level of vitamin D in  PPMS patients than in the non-MS group
Vitamin D does not seem to be a major weapon in  MS treatment… prevention perhaps?
Talk to your Health Practitioner!

 

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