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a bone disease that is manifested by softening and deformity of bone as a result of disturbances in mineral metabolism; usually, the depletion of calcium salts, phosphoric acid, and vitamin D is the cause. Osteomalacia generally occurs in women, especially during pregnancy, in which case the pelvic bones and adjacent portions of the skeleton are particularly affected. Recovery occurs in the postpartum period. Bones may remain permanently deformed after osteomalacia as a result of calcification.
REFERENCE“Osteomaliatsiia.” In Bol’shaia meditsinskaia entsiklopediia, 2nd ed., vol. 22, Moscow, 1961.
In animals. Osteomalacia in animals is manifested clinically by a decreased and unusual appetite, during which the animal exhibits pica and eats inedible objects. Other symptoms are emaciation and lowered productivity, lameness, loose teeth, sluggishness, curvature or sagging of the spinal column, and bone fractures. The diagnosis is based on analysis of the mineral and vitamin D content of feed; the calcium, phosphorus, and phosphatase content of blood; and roentgenograms of the tail vertebrae. Osteomalacia in animals is prevented by exercise, by regular checks of the feed and inclusion of optimum quantities of minerals and vitamins, and by ultraviolet irradiation while the animals are in their stalls.