Primary vitamin-E deficiency is rarely seen due to the widespread use of vegetable oils. Deficiencies may occur in people with fat malabsorption syndrome.
Smokers and adults on very low-fat diets are at increased risk of developing vitamin-E deficiency.
Vitamin E deficiency, may mostly occur in premature infants and people unable to absorb fats. Preterm infants are particularly susceptible to hemolytic anemia (anemia caused by the destruction of red blood cells) this deficiency occurs in preterm infants as they are born with limited stores of vitamin E, which are exhausted by rapid growth, and the infants are inefficient in absorbing vitamin E from the intestinal tract. To prevent hemolytic anemia, special formulas and supplements containing vitamin E are prescribed for preterm infants.