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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is scurvy?
Scurvy is a condition caused by a prolonged deficiency of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) and is characterized by general weakness, gum disease (gingivitis), anemia and skin problems, including bleeding into the skin.
What causes scurvy?
Scurvy is caused by a severe vitamin C deficiency. Symptoms usually appear after three months. Vitamin C is not produced by the body; it must come from the diet. Severe vitamin C deficiency can be caused by malnutrition (not eating enough fruit and vegetables with …
Who can develop scurvy?
Some people are more at risk of developing scurvy. These include: alcoholics with poor nutrition; older people who may be malnourished; people who smoke (smoking lowers vitamin C uptake); people on fad diets that may restrict certain foods; people with malabsorption …
How is scurvy diagnosed?
Your doctor will diagnose scurvy after evaluating your dietary habits and performing some simple tests. Your doctor may perform a physical examination, ask about your medical history and conduct a blood test to check vitamin C levels.
How is scurvy treated?
Scurvy is treated by increasing the amount of vitamin C in your diet. This can be in the form of fruits, particularly citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons and limes. Vegetables including spinach, cabbage, capsicum and broccoli are also high in vitamin C. To aid the …
Will scurvy clear up on its own?
Scurvy will not clear up on its own. An increase in vitamin C in the diet is required to treat scurvy.
About this article
Author: Jonathan Meddings BMedLabSc (Hons)
First answered: 02 Oct 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 4.9 out of 5
Votes: 1307 (Click smiley face below to rate)
Category: Food and interference with medications