Background: Clinical studies have reported improved neurological outcomes in patients who were taking vitamin D supplements. This study investigates the effect of intramuscular (IM) vitamin D supplementation in patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS) on neurological outcomes and inflammatory marker levels.
Methods: This study included patients diagnosed with AIS (n = 60) from the Neurology Unit of Loghman Hakim Hospital, Tehran, Iran, during the year 2019. Patients with AIS were allocated randomly into two groups who received a single dose of 300000 IU IM vitamin D and a control group that did not receive vitamin D supplementation. Serum vitamin D concentration, interleukin 6 (IL-6), and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) levels, as primary outcomes, and the Modified Rankin Scale (MRS), the National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS), and the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), as secondary outcomes, were measured at the baseline and the end of the study (6 weeks).
Results: Eventually, 59 patients with AIS completed the intervention study. A single dose of 300000 IU increased vitamin D level; moreover, vitamin D supplementation improved MRS and IL-6 levels significantly (P = 0.01, P = 0.02, respectively). There were reverse correlations between serum vitamin D and NIHSS and TNF-α after vitamin D administration. However, no statistically significant effect of vitamin D on the TNF-α or NIHSS and MMSE was seen compared to the control group.
Conclusion: Vitamin D probably due to a single dose and short duration of administration, as well as a short follow-up period, had no favorable effects on TNF-α level and NIHSS score.