Rare case of scurvy for Spanish baby

Infant suffered lack of vitamin C after being fed only almond milk

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Doctors from the La Fe hospital reported on the case in the US journal Pediatrics (Photo: EFE)

By Dave Jamieson

SCURVY, a disease suffered historically by sailors deprived of fresh food, has been diagnosed in an 11-month-old baby in Valencia. A report on the case in the US journal Pediatrics warns of the dangers of restricting infants to a diet which is entirely plant-based.

It explains that the child developed a reaction to cows’ milk at about 10 weeks so his parents switched to an almond-based milk instead. At six months, the baby refused pureed fruit and vegetables, and remained on a pure almond milk diet.

By 11 months, the absence of vitamin C, which plays a crucial role in the formation of collagen to develop connective tissue, was becoming serious as the infant could not stand on his legs and was in pain if his parents moved them. It was discovered that he had suffered fractures in his femurs and spine.

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