The Prevalence of Low Selenium Levels in Adult Patients Undergoing Bone Marrow Transplantation: A Brief Communication

Nutrition and Cancer-an International Journal

Volume 6 - Number

Article Type: ---- Unspecified ----

Selenium (Se) is an essential trace element, and its deficiency is considered to be important in various types of cancer. There are just a few data regarding this issue among adult patients with hematological malignancy. Serum Se levels were determined in 22 adult patients candidates for bone marrow transplantation (BMT) in Iran. The mean serum Se levels before BMT was 19.91 mu g/l (from 12.00 to 62.00 mu g/l), and almost all the patients had low Se serum levels (normal serum Se level: 46-143 mu g/l). The level of Se 20 days after BMT was 22.53 mu g/l, which did not show any significant changes. Most of the patients did not suffer from malnutrition, as they had mostly normal albumin levels. Even though the results of this study showed that Se deficiency is common among our hematological malignant patients, it can not be concluded that these low Se levels are causally related to cancers for which BMT is undertaken. Further studies are needed to evaluate the Se levels at diagnosis before treatment effects.