Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Symptoms Treatment Warning Signs Prevention Underlying Cause

Vitamin C Deficiency Overview

Another name for Vitamin C Deficiency is Scurvy.

What is scurvy?
A person with scurvy has a deficiency of vitamin C. Vitamin C increases the absorption of calcium and iron from the intestines. It is also essential for maintaining blood vessel walls, producing hormones, and wound healing. Scurvy is rare in the US.

What are the symptoms of scurvy?
Symptoms of scurvy include swollen gums, dry skin, dry mouth, dry eyes, mouth pain, and dental cavities. Additional symptoms of scurvy may include eye redness, bleeding gums, and a rash that looks like bruises or broken blood vessels under the skin.

How does the doctor treat scurvy?
Treatment for scurvy includes vitamin C supplements. Approximately 1/10 of a cup of orange juice per day will prevent scurvy.

Continue to Vitamin C Deficiency Incidence

Last Updated: Sep 27, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Vitamin C Deficiency References
  1. Brickley M, Ives R. Skeletal manifestations of infantile scurvy. Am J Phys Anthropol. 2006 Feb;129(2):163-72. [16323179]
  2. Cook GC. Scurvy in the British Mercantile Marine in the 19th century, and the contribution of the Seamen's Hospital Society. Postgrad Med J. 2004 Apr;80(942):224-9. [15082845]
  3. Fain O. Musculoskeletal manifestations of scurvy. Joint Bone Spine. 2005 Mar;72(2):124-8. [15797491]
  4. Pimentel L. Scurvy: historical review and current diagnostic approach. Am J Emerg Med. 2003 Jul;21(4):328-32. [12898492]
  5. Strumia R. Dermatologic signs in patients with eating disorders. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2005;6(3):165-73. [15943493]
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