Rickets

  • Alternative Names

    Osteomalacia in children; Vitamin D deficiency; Renal rickets; Hepatic rickets


    Treatment

    The goals of treatment are to relieve symptoms and correct the cause of the condition. The cause must be treated to prevent the disease from returning.

    Replacing calcium, phosphorus, or vitamin D that is lacking will eliminate most symptoms of rickets. Dietary sources of vitamin D include fish, liver, and processed milk. Exposure to moderate amounts of sunlight is encouraged. If rickets is caused by a metabolic problem, a prescription for vitamin D supplements may be needed.

    Positioning or bracing may be used to reduce or prevent deformities. Some skeletal deformities may require corrective surgery.


    Support Groups


    Expectations (prognosis)

    The disorder may be corrected by replacing vitamin D and minerals. Laboratory values and x-rays usually improve after about 1 week, although some cases may require large doses of minerals and vitamin D.

    If rickets is not corrected while the child is still growing, skeletal deformities and short stature may be permanent. If it is corrected while the child is young, skeletal deformities often improve or disappear with time.


    Complications
    • Chronic skeletal pain
    • Skeletal deformities
    • Skeletal fractures, may occur without cause

    Calling your health care provider

    Call your child's health care provider if you notice symptoms of rickets.


Images

X-ray