Vitamin D deficiency associated with self-neglect in the elderly

Koko Aung, Jason Burnett, Scott M. Smith, Carmel Bitondo Dyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Background. Vitamin D deficiency is common in elders. However, little is known about the implications of vitamin D deficiency in elder self-neglect. Specific Aims. To characterize a group of self-neglecting elders with vitamin Ddeficiency based on clinical, cognitive, and functional status. Participants. Forty-four self-neglecting elders referred by the Adult Protective Services. Methods. Vitamin D status of the self-neglecting elders was based upon serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OHD). Demographics, cognitive, and functional characteristics of vitamin Ddeficient self-neglecting elders were described and compared to thosewithout vitaminDdeficiency. Results. Vitamin D deficiency (25-OHD < 25 nmol/L) was detected in 16 out of 44 self-neglecting elders (36%). Self-neglecting elders with vitamin D deficiency had lower scores in the Physical Performance Test and higher scores in the Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills, compared with those who were not vitamin D deficient (p = 0.014 and p = 0.018 respectively). Conclusions. Vitamin D deficiency is common in elder self-neglect. Self-neglecting elders with vitamin D deficiency have impaired physical performance and inadequate living skills, which can be potentially improved by treating vitamin D deficiency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-78
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Elder Abuse and Neglect
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 7 2007


  • Elder self-neglect
  • Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills (KELS)
  • Physical Performance Test
  • Vitamin D deficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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