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Coroner demands pregnant women take vitamin D supplements


A coroner has written to the health secretary calling for all pregnant women and those who breastfeed to take vitamin D.

North London coroner Andrew Walker said action should be taken to reduce the risk to others after he held an inquest last week into the death of a three-month-old boy.

In his letter to Andrew Lansley, Mr Walker said Milind Agarwal was taken to the doctor in July with symptoms of a probable viral infection.

He was sent home with saline nasal drops. A later telephone consultation with another doctor led to his parents being advised to give him paracetamol.

But his mother and father still had concerns and called an ambulance. Their son was taken to Northwick Park Hospital in north London “where it was recognised he was seriously unwell”.

The baby died from septic inflammation of the heart against a background of an abnormal aortic heart valve.

A consultant paediatric pathologist told the coroner’s court that vitamin D deficiency played a role in progression of the infection and suggested all pregnant and breastfeeding women be prescribed vitamin D daily.


Readers' comments (5)

  • This again is another badly reported report by the Nursing Times. What on earth does this mean? How can a coroner demand vit d supplements after on 3 month old baby with a valve problem? Is it to stop the valve abnormality or are all children at risk. Please can you report things so that they make sense? I use your service as I am so busy at work I get no time to do lit searches or time in the library myself so this service is invaluable. If you want nurses to be professional then please provide us with decent reports as you are meant to be one of the leading general nursing periodicals. Thank you.

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  • Also the language used is quite inflammatory, DEMANDS?!?!

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  • there is far too much of this language used in healthcare strategies from the powers that be

    such as 'demands', 'should' 'must', etc.

    without evidence-based proof of the best course of action for each individual

    what is safe for one may be poison for another

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  • Goodness knows vitamin D supplementation is cheap, easy & pretty darned safe, and often overlooked. The lack of vitamin D affects the child for life (rickets, anyone?), so the risk/reward equation is pretty solidly on the side of supplements.

    A bit sad that it takes an Enquirer-type headline to grab attention, but then we all DID click on it....

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  • ...and side effects of Vit D might be...?

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