Scurvy as cause of purpura in the XXI century: a review on this "ancient" disease

Giovanni Pecorini, Andrea Flex, Guido Massi, Raffaele Landolfi, M Antonelli, ML Burzo

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista

2 Citazioni (Scopus)

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Scurvy is defined as a deficiency of ascorbic acid, which is an essential exogenous vitamin in humans. Vitamin C is involved in collagen synthesis and its deficit can cause disorders of connective tissue. The most frequent symptoms are weakness, arthralgias, anorexia and depression, commonly associated with follicular hyperkeratosis and perifollicular hemorrhage, with purpura.PATIENTS AND METHODS: A young woman, with a history of malnutrition, manifested purpura and hematoma of the left lower limb. The laboratory tests didn't detect alterations either in coagulation, the platelet count or in the autoimmunity. The total body TC scan didn't show neoplasia or other suspected lesions. Excluding the most important causes of purpura, in consideration of malnutrition, scurvy was suspected.RESULTS: A skin biopsy confirmed the diagnosis. Accordingly to this finding, a treatment with a daily intravenous infusion of vitamin C was started with consequent improvement of hematoma and purpura.CONCLUSIONS: Scurvy is a re-emerging disease, also in western countries. When purpura appears in young adults, scurvy has to be investigated, especially when a history of malnutrition is present. The treatment with vitamin C infusions should be started as soon as possible in order to prevent any complications.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)4355-4358
Numero di pagine4
RivistaEuropean Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences
Volume22
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2018

Keywords

  • Scurvy
  • Ascorbic acid
  • Vitamin C
  • Purpura

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