The Potential to Improve Diabetes Control With Vitamin D Replacement in African American Patients: Case Report and Literature Review.

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African Americans have a higher prevalence of Diabetes mellitus and associated complications. The prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency is also higher in African Americans. We report an African American veteran who was followed for a period of 10 years in the Endocrine clinic for insulin-requiring diabetes. Despite intensive, medical, nutritional and educational efforts during that period, no discernible progress was made in achieving any improvement in glycemic control. The patient appeared to be noncompliant with recommended strategies to improve glycemia. The patient was seen recently and was found to be profoundly Vitamin D deficient with a 25 (OH) Vitamin D level of 11.6 ng/ml [30-100 ng/ml]. While patient did not wish to change his insulin regimen or diabetic management, he was willing to accept Vitamin D therapy. Replacement with Vitamin D was associated with significant improvement in glycosylated hemoglobin to previously unmatched levels of glycemic control. We discuss the multiple potential mechanisms by which improved Vitamin D status may result in improved diabetes control. Given the current pandemic of Vitamin D deficiency and the plethora of potential benefits, we recommend maintaining adequate Vitamin D reserves in diabetic patients with a special emphasis on minority populations.