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Am J Case Rep ; 22: e934216, 2021 Nov 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1497919


BACKGROUND Rickets is the deficiency in mineralization of the bone associated with lack of sunlight exposure and inadequate dietary calcium and/or vitamin D in children. Important efforts to eradicate rickets include appropriate sunlight exposure advice and fortification of food and milk with vitamin D. However, there is a growing concern that the current Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic will increase the incidence of rickets due to inadequate sunlight exposure resulting from movement restriction measures imposed by governments across the world. CASE REPORT A 22-month-old girl presented to our primary care clinic in Selangor, Malaysia with abnormal gait and bowing of the legs during the COVID-19 pandemic. She had a history of inadequate sun exposure as she lived in an apartment and there was a Movement Control Order in place because of the pandemic. Calcium intake was also poor as she could not tolerate formula milk and did not consume any other dairy products. Investigations revealed severe hypocalcemia and low vitamin D level. She was diagnosed with nutritional rickets and was referred for admission to correct the hypocalcemia. She was subsequently discharged with oral calcium and vitamin D supplementation. Her calcium and vitamin D levels improved and at her 6-month review, her bilateral bowed legs had improved significantly. CONCLUSIONS This case highlights the importance of having a high degree of suspicion for vitamin D deficiency and rickets in young children growing up during the COVID-19 pandemic. Public health messages on preventing the spread of COVID-19 should also be interlaced with messages addressing the possible effects of our new norms such as inadequate sunlight exposure.

COVID-19 , Rickets , Calcium , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Infant , Malaysia/epidemiology , Pandemics , Rickets/diagnosis , Rickets/epidemiology , Rickets/etiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Vitamin D