Schizophrenia is a brain disorder that affects the way a person acts, thinks, and sees the world. Several observational studies have investigated the association between vitamin D status and schizophrenia. The November 2013 issue of Schizophrenia Research carries a study that found vitamin D deficiency to be linked to the first episodes of psychosis (FEP).
Another very recent study, published online on July 22, 2014 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism highlights the role of vitamin D in psychiatric health. The researchers found a strong association between vitamin D deficiency and schizophrenia.
More than 2800 participants were included, showing that those with vitamin D deficiency were more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with schizophrenia compared to their counterparts who were not vitamin D deficient. The study also found that 65% of the patients who had the condition also had lower levels of vitamin D.
Most cases of schizophrenia appear in the late teens or early adulthood. In rare cases, schizophrenia can even affect young children and adolescents with slightly different symptoms.
ICD-9-CM Codes that are used to report this diagnosis for medical billing purposes are as follows:
- 295.10 Disorganized type schizophrenia, unspecified
- 295.20 Catatonic type schizophrenia, unspecified
- 295.30 Paranoid type schizophrenia, unspecified
- 295.40 Schizophreniform disorder, unspecified
- 295.60 Schizophrenic disorders, residual type, unspecified
- 295.80 Other specified types of schizophrenia, unspecified
- 295.90 Unspecified schizophrenia, unspecified
The findings support the importance of vitamin D in brain function and psychological health. According to the authors, “As vitamin D deficiency is a global issue, more attention should be drawn to the assessment of serum vitamin D levels in order to screen and support individuals that are at higher risk of having deficiencies. Moreover, our findings might help psychiatrists in the healing process of patients with schizophrenia”, It was also noted that more randomized clinical trials are required to confirm the findings.