Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Disease of growing bone: Rickets

Rickets is a disease that affects bone structure, resulting in soft and weakened bones and is particularly damaging to the weight-bearing bones in the legs, spine, and pelvis. A similar disease process occurs in adults and is known as osteomalacia, or simply soft bones.

It is characterized by malformed and weak bones because of poor calcium and phosphorous deposition.

Rickets is more likely to occur in children eating a poor diet and living in northern countries, where there is less sunshine. Vitamin D allows the body to absorb calcium from food and makes sure that the calcium is passed from the blood into the bone when the bone is being formed.

Defective mineralization of both bones and cartilaginous material in the epiphyseal growth plate becomes apparent as the child grows.

In rare cases, there may be rickets of urinary origin, where there are excessive urinary losses of either calcium or phosphorus. Vitamin D-resistant rickets is, in most cases, a genetic disorder where excessive phosphate is lost in the urine which reduces the supply available for mineralization of bone.

Rickets was first identified in Europe in the 1600s when the lack of sunlight and meager, unbalanced diet available to working class city dwellers cause an epidemic of rickets until the early 1900s.
Disease of growing bone: Rickets
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