Do the test results of cognitive function and activities of daily life of seniors correlate with the state of vitamin D supply to the organism?

Authors: Emmanuela Fernandová;  Hana Matějovská Kubešová
Authors‘ workplace: Klinika interní, geriatrie a praktického lékařství LF MU a FN Brno, pracoviště Bohunice
Published in: Vnitř Lék 2018; 64(11): 1107-1114
Category: Original Contributions



Till recently, the main effect of Vitamin D (calcitriol) was accounted for its role in regulation of calcium levels. But at the present time several other important functions of this vitamin have been unfolding in human organism, which currently ascribe to the properties of hormone. It also effects among other functions such as cognitive functions, immune system and muscle mass. In the resent past there are rising number of scientific publications on possible consequences of the long term deficit of Calcitriol, not only in the older generation. Aim: The aim of our study was to establish the relationship between the supply of Vitamin D to the organism and basic parameters of self-sufficiency, which are cognitive functions stipulated in the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) test and Barthels test for Activities of Daily Living (ADL) among seniors.

Materials and methods:

In our study we evaluated, 244 patients (65 men and 179 women) of average age 80,1 ± 7,4 (min. 65, max. 99) hospitalized at Department of Internal Medicine, Geriatrics, and General Practice of Faculty of Medicine, Masaryk University and Faculty Hospital Brno, from March 2012 to September 2012. The state of Vitamin D supply to the organism was evaluated with the help of serum Vitamin D total [1.25(OH)2D + 25(OH)D], the values of MMSE and ADL were taken from the third day of hospitalization till overcoming the acute stage. The characteristics of the patients were drawn with multimorbidity index CIRS – CI (cumulative Illness Rating Scale – Comorbidity Index). Furthermore, we observed the correlation of Serum Vitamin D levels to the season of the year.


In our patients average concentration of vitamin D levels, MMSE, and ADL was 37.9 ± 26.1 (8–142 nmol/l), 23.36 ± 6.91 (0–30 points), 80.66 ± 25.13 (0–100 points), and CIRS CI 4.7 + 1.9 points, respectively. The correlation of vitamin D serum level with MMSE was r = 0,289 (p ≤ 0.01), with ADL r = 0,292 (p ≤ 0.01), and CIRS CI r = -0.22 (p < 0.05). Using multivariation analysis proved the significance of correlations obtained, even after the exclusion of multimorbidity. There was no statistically significant correlation between seasons of the year and serum vitamin D total level. However, nonsignificant decreasing trend of serum vitamin D total level with rising age of patients was found (r = -0.149, NS).


The values obtained for MMSE and ADL demonstrated a significant correlation with serum vitamin D total levels. Attention paid to maintain an adequate supply of serum vitamin D in the organism, helps to maintain quality bone remodeling and functioning of other processes with which it takes part. For supplementing elderly sick patients, apart from diet, it is suitable to choose partially or fully hydroxylated supplements and adequate exposure to sunlight.

Key words: 

ADL – cognitive function – MMSE - vitamin D

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