An evaluation of vitamin D levels in children with seasonal allergic rhinitis during pollen season

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Over the past 50 years, the prevalence of allergic diseases has been on the rise, and a similar increase in prevalence has been observed for allergic rhinitis (AR).1 There are approximately 500 million AR patients worldwide, and the precise reason for this increased prevalence is unknown.3 The frequency of AR, however, does change with age among children. It occurs most frequently between the ages of 13 and 14, and 14.6% of individuals in this age range have this condition.4 The prevalence of seasonal AR (SAR) is reportedly 9.1%.3 Although AR and SAR are frequently occurring diseases, they are not life‐threatening; nonetheless, they are noteworthy, as they are globally prevalent and can adversely affect patient quality of life.3
Given the increase in the prevalence of allergic diseases, attention has been paid to environmental factors such as diet, climate, and lifestyle.5 Vitamin D affects the human body not only through diet but also via climate and lifestyle. Therefore, vitamin D is considered to be an important environmental factor.5 Wjst et al. suggest that the prevalence of allergic diseases increased worldwide after vitamin D supplementation was offered to the general population.6 Following this suggestion, studies on the association between allergic diseases and vitamin D increased. In the last decade, vitamin D has been found to be associated with allergic diseases, especially in research investigating the immunological effects of vitamin D.5 It is believed that this association is based on the regulation of the adaptive and innate immune systems by vitamin D.5
Studies conducted to explain the relationship between vitamin D and allergic diseases have usually focused on asthma or atopic dermatitis (AD).5 However, AR can serve as a more suitable disease in examining this association, as it has a less‐complicated pathogenesis than does asthma or AD.4 Few studies on vitamin D have focused solely on AR, despite there being a high prevalence of this disease within the general population.3 Additionally, prospective studies on vitamin D levels in children with AR have tended to feature very small patient samples. There has been no study of vitamin D levels in children with SAR. The aim of this study was to compare the vitamin D levels of children with SAR to those of healthy children during pollen season.

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