Scurvy is a well-known clinical condition caused by vitamin C deficiency. Although considered a rare disease in high-income countries, it has been recently increasingly reported in children, especially in those with abnormal dietary habits, mental or physical disabilities. We performed an extensive review of the literature analyzing studies published in the last 20 years focusing on clinical features, differential diagnosis and diagnostic delay. Fifteen articles were selected, collectively reporting a total of 166 children. Because of the wide clinical spectrum (musculoskeletal complaints and/or mucocutaneous lesions or systemic symptoms), scurvy can mimic several conditions, including autoimmune diseases, infections, and neoplasia. In addition, frequent findings such as normal nutritional status, anemia or elevated inflammatory markers may guide clinicians towards the abovementioned misdiagnoses. Scurvy should be considered in patients presenting with musculoskeletal complaints, not only in those with risk factors but also in healthy children. A focused dietary history and a careful physical examination, assessing other signs of vitamin C deficiency, are mandatory in these patients. When suspected, the dosage of serum vitamin C is the diagnostic gold standard; furthermore, imaging studies, performed by an expert radiologist, can reveal the typical features of scurvy. Only early diagnosis can avoid unnecessary investigations and potentially fatal complications of the disease.

A Narrative Review on Pediatric Scurvy: The Last Twenty Years / Trapani S., Rubino C., Indolfi G., Lionetti P.. - In: NUTRIENTS. - ISSN 2072-6643. - ELETTRONICO. - 14:(2022), pp. 684-694.

A Narrative Review on Pediatric Scurvy: The Last Twenty Years

Trapani S.;Indolfi G.;Lionetti P.
2022

Abstract

Scurvy is a well-known clinical condition caused by vitamin C deficiency. Although considered a rare disease in high-income countries, it has been recently increasingly reported in children, especially in those with abnormal dietary habits, mental or physical disabilities. We performed an extensive review of the literature analyzing studies published in the last 20 years focusing on clinical features, differential diagnosis and diagnostic delay. Fifteen articles were selected, collectively reporting a total of 166 children. Because of the wide clinical spectrum (musculoskeletal complaints and/or mucocutaneous lesions or systemic symptoms), scurvy can mimic several conditions, including autoimmune diseases, infections, and neoplasia. In addition, frequent findings such as normal nutritional status, anemia or elevated inflammatory markers may guide clinicians towards the abovementioned misdiagnoses. Scurvy should be considered in patients presenting with musculoskeletal complaints, not only in those with risk factors but also in healthy children. A focused dietary history and a careful physical examination, assessing other signs of vitamin C deficiency, are mandatory in these patients. When suspected, the dosage of serum vitamin C is the diagnostic gold standard; furthermore, imaging studies, performed by an expert radiologist, can reveal the typical features of scurvy. Only early diagnosis can avoid unnecessary investigations and potentially fatal complications of the disease.
2022
14
684
694
Trapani S., Rubino C., Indolfi G., Lionetti P.
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Utilizza questo identificatore per citare o creare un link a questa risorsa: https://hdl.handle.net/2158/1260654
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