Osteomalacia/Rickets

Glenda Vazquez

This disease is also known as rickets in children. The softness of the bones is more likely to cause bow and fractures. or problems with the break down of this vitamin. .Introduction  Osteomalacia is known as the softening of bones due to insufficient vitamin D. but they lack calcium.Bones with osteomalacia have sufficient amounts of collagen which gives the bones their structure.

a protein found in wheat. calcium and other minerals aren¶t absorbed efficiently. Chronic pancreatitis Pancreatitis is the long-standing inflammation of your pancreas. such as milk and cereals are fortified with vitamin D. Damaged intestinal lining doesn¶t absorb nutrients. so they are not available for mineralization in the bone building process. Surgery removing or bypassing your small intestine can lead to osteomalacia. the lining of the small intestine is damaged by consuming foods having gluten. Certain Surgeries The removal of part or all of your stomach known as gastrectomy.S. live in areas where sunlight hours are short. as well as a healthy one would. Insufficient vitamin D intake A diet low in vitamin D is the most common cause seen worldwide. barley. which are then absorbed by your intestines. . Insufficient sunlight exposure Sunlight makes vitamin D in your skin. because many foods.Causes/Rick Factors  ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ The most common cause of osteomalacia is a deficiency of vitamin D. Is less common in the U. This then result in soft bones. can lead to this disease because the stomach breaks down foods to release vitamin D and other materials. an organ that makes digestive enzymes and hormones. wear very strong sunscreen. or where the air is smoggy. Chronic sprue In this autoimmune disorder. If the pancreas is inflamed enzymes in charge of breaking down food and releasing nutrients do not flow as freely into your intestines. Therefore osteomalacia can develop in people who spend little time in the sunlight. and rye. Lack of vitamin D. Vitamin D insufficiency can cause osteomalacia because vitamin D facilitates calcium absorption and other minerals in the gastrointestinal tract necessary for bone building. such as vitamin D.

Rickets: Incidence in Europe is similar to that in the U. such as in the Middle East. rickets may occur when infants are bundled in clothing and are not exposed to sunlight.Incidence/Prevalence ‡ ‡ ‡  In the United States it is estimated that 20 to 25 million people suffer from osteomalacia.. persons who live in inner-city areas). In some parts of Africa. . Breastfed infants who receive no vitamin D supplementation also are at risk. although the mild disorder continues in the high-risk population (eg.S. severe nutritional rickets has become rare. In sunny areas. deficiency of calcium and/or phosphorous in the diet may lead to rickets. including 25 percent of women beyond menopause Incidence of 1 per 1000 people in the United States Rickets: In the U. individuals with dark skin.S.

. In order to rule out other bone diseases the following tests may be conducted: Blood and urine tests In the cases caused by vitamin D deficiency or phosphorous loss. Some people also walk with a waddling motion. Bone pain is especially felt in the lower spine. When diagnosing osteomalacia. Osteomalacia may cause weakness and stiffness in the arms and legs. The pain is dull and aching and get worse with physical activity. which is then viewed under a microscope. As osteomalacia worsens symptoms may include bone pain and muscle weakness. legs and feet. X-ray Slight cracks in the bones which are visible on x-rays known as looser transformation zones are characteristic of people with osteomalacia · Bone scan Bone scans detect areas of high and low bone metabolism in your body. Even gentle pressure on the bone may cause severe pain. Those with osteomalacia have radioactive dye unevenly distributed in some areas of their bones. abnormal levels of vitamin D and minerals calcium and phosphorous are often detected through blood and urine tests. but may be seen in x-rays or diagnostic tests. it is often not needed to make the diagnosis. Even though bone biopsies are very accurate in detecting osteomalacia. decreased muscle tone and discomfort during movement. Bone biopsy A bone biopsy is performed by inserting a slender needle through the skin and into the bone to withdraw a small sample. pelvis. doctors will inquire about the patient¶s time spent in the sun and about their diet. Radioactive dye is injected in the vein and a picture of the amount of radioactive dye gathers in your bones.Symptoms/Diagnosis       In the early stages of osteomalacia a person may not feel the symptoms.

Doctors suggest that patients continue taking vitamin D indefinitely to prevent the return of osteomalacia. After a patient begins treatment. If the blood levels of calcium and phosphorous are low the patient may also take supplements of these minerals. . they may undergo periodic blood tests to assure blood levels of vitamin D and certain minerals are within normal limits. Doctors also recommend vitamin D supplements depending on the dose needed and whether you have other health problems.Treatment Before After    When osteomalacia is caused from a dietary or sunlight deficiency. Symptoms may lessen within a few weeks of treatment. X-rays are also taken to determine the improvement of the bones. replenishing the low levels of vitamin D in the body usually cures the condition. Although uncommon. vitamin D can also be given as an injection or through a vein in the arm. Most people with osteomalacia take vitamin D supplements by mouth for several weeks or months.

Eat food high in vitamin D Eat foods that are naturally rich in vitamin D such as oily fishes (salmon. Exercise Exercise such as walking helps strengthen bones. Other foods that are fortified with vitamin D include cereal. Spend a few minutes in the sun Direct exposure in the sun to the arms and legs for five to ten minutes daily is sufficient for adequate vitamin D production. and yogurt.Prevention      Osteomalacia caused by inadequate sun exposure and a diet low in vitamin D can be prevented. they can build enough vitamin D stores in the skin during warmer months. and sardines) and egg yolks. Take supplements If a person doesn¶t get enough vitamins and minerals in their diet or if they have a medical condition affecting the ability of their digestive system to absorbing nutrients. mackerel. Although regular use of sunscreen helps prevent skin cancer and premature aging of the skin. they should avoid strenuous activity until their bones heal. If a person lives in cold climate and don¶t get enough sun exposure during the winter. they are recommended to ask a doctor about taking vitamin D and calcium supplements. milk. bread. . there is concern that the frequent use of strong sunscreen can increase the risk of developing ostemalacia. but if a patient has slight fractures due to osteomalacia.

A) Vitamin D deficiency B) Lack of collagen C) Excess Vitamin D D) None 3. The most common cause of osteomalacia is ____. The softness of the bones is more likely to cause bow and fractures. Osteomalacia is known as the softening of bones due to insufficient vitamin D.Questions 1. A) True B) False 2. Osteomalacia can develop in people who a lot little time in the sunlight. A) True B) False 4. or problems with the break down of this vitamin. A) True B) False .