One of the major symptoms of a deficiency of this important mineral are skeletal abnormalities. Osteopenia, osteomalacia, osteoporosis and rickets may all be caused by calcium deficiency.
In children, osteomalacia is known as rickets. When children have rickets, their bones become soft and flexible, bending in ways normal bones would not.
Because circulating blood calcium levels are tightly regulated in the bloodstream, hypocalcemia (low blood calcium) does not usually occur due to low calcium intake, but rather results from a medical problem or treatment such as renal failure, surgical removal of the stomach (which significantly decreases calcium absorption), and use of certain types of diuretics (which result in increased loss of calcium and fluid through urine). Simple dietary calcium deficiency produces no signs at all. Hypocalcemia can cause numbness and tingling in fingers, muscle cramps, convulsions, lethargy, poor appetite, and mental confusion. It can also result in abnormal heart rhythms and even death. Individuals with medical problems that result in hypocalcemia should be under a medical doctor's care and receive specific treatment aimed at normalizing calcium levels in the blood. [Please note that the symptoms described here may be due to a medical condition other than hypocalcemia.] It is important to consult a health professional if you experience any of these symptoms.
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