Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news

Effects of vitamin D supplementation on musculoskeletal health

A systematic review and meta-analysis suggests that vitamin D supplementation does not prevent fractures or falls, or have clinically meaningful effects on bone mineral density. There were no differences between the effects of higher and lower doses of vitamin D. in addition, the review concluded that there is little justification to use vitamin D supplements to maintain or improve musculoskeletal health.

Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology 2018.

Comment

 

Glucocorticoids for croup in children

A Cochrane review of glucocorticoids for croup in children shows a reduction in symptoms at two hours, and the effect lasted for at least 24 hours. Compared to placebo, glucocorticoids reduced length of stay in hospital, and reduced the rate of return visits to care. Serious adverse events were infrequent.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2018, Issue 8.

 

Botulinum toxin-A for the treatment of neuralgia

This meta-analysis of 12 RCTs (n=495) concluded that botulinum toxin-A may be an effective and safe option for the treatment of neuralgia. Pain scores were significantly lower compared to placebo at 4 weeks and 24 weeks. There were no significant differences in hours of sleep, SF-36 questionnaire, or the incidence of injection pain or hematoma between the two groups.

Journal of Pain Research 2018:11 2343–2351.

 

Demystifying serotonin syndrome (or serotonin toxicity)

Serotonin toxicity is a drug-induced condition in which patients present with a combination of neuromuscular, autonomic, and mental status symptoms. Serotonin-elevating drugs include monoamine oxidase inhibitors, serotonin reuptake inhibitors, and serotonin releasers. Most cases involve 2 drugs that increase serotonin in different ways; the most concerning combination is a monoamine oxidase inhibitor with a SSRI or SNRI.

Canadian Family Physician 2018;64(10):720-7.