Suicide risk in RA patients is associated with suboptimal vitamin D levels
Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) may develop anxiety and depression. Vitamin D deficiency can be the cause of many diseases. For one study, researchers sought to examine whether there was a link between serum vitamin D levels and the frequency of depression, anxiety symptoms, and suicidal risk or thoughts in patients with RA. In the cross-sectional study, they recruited RA patients over the age of 18 and divided them into 3 groups based on vitamin D blood levels: adequate (30 ng/mL), insufficient (20-29 ng /mL) and deficient. (20ng/mL). They examined the relationship between suicide risk, depression, and anxiety with vitamin D levels in rheumatoid arthritis and the rheumatoid arthritis quality of life questionnaire using self-reported Plutchik and the hospital anxiety and depression scale.
Between January and October of this year, they investigated 72 patients with RA. They found an inverse relationship between the Plutchik score and suicide risk when vitamin D levels were low, but not with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Suicidal thoughts were linked to a higher score on the rheumatoid arthritis quality of life questionnaire.
Despite the significant incidence of depressive and anxious symptoms in RA patients, a low Plutchik’s coefficient of association with low blood levels of vitamin D was found. However, in the analysis of covariance, they found that vitamin D levels continue to be linked to a reduction in suicidal thoughts. Further research is needed to determine a risk profile for early psychological therapies aimed at improving the quality of life of patients with RA.