Vitamin K prescribing patterns and bone health surveillance in UK children with cystic fibrosis.

Research paper by D S DS Urquhart, M M Fitzpatrick, J J Cope, A A Jaffe

Indexed on: 16 Nov '07Published on: 16 Nov '07Published in: Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics


Bone disease has become an increasingly recognized complication of cystic fibrosis (CF). Although causes of CF bone disease are multifactorial, there has been recent interest in the role of vitamin K in CF bone disease.A questionnaire survey of all UK paediatric CF centre dietitians and centre directors was carried out to ascertain current practice with regard to vitamin K prescribing and bone health surveillance.The survey had a 97% response rate representing 3414 CF children. Twenty-three centre directors and 19 dietitians responded, and at least moderate agreement was noted with kappa scores >0.41 for all but one question assessed. Ninety-three per cent centres report that >90% pancreatic insufficient patients receive vitamins A, D and E, yet only 18% centres routinely supplement vitamin K. The majority (60%) report that <10% of their CF patients receive vitamin K, whilst vitamin K dosage varied from 0.3-0.5 to 10 mg day(-1). Only one centre undertook no bone health surveillance, and vitamin D levels are measured in 89%, calcium intake assessed in 82% and dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scans performed in 61% centres.Heterogeneity in both vitamin K prescribing practices and bone health surveillance in CF across the UK were noted, underlining the need for a national consensus on bone health management, as well as acting as a call for longitudinal research into the clinical effectiveness of vitamin K therapy in CF.