Malnutrition and starvation remain major problems in many parts of the world. In developed countries, malnutrition due to poverty is rare. Malnutrition occurs in ihe psychological disorder anorexia nervosa. It may be associated with chronic abuse of alcohol and other addictive drugs and is a feature of HIV infection.

Scurvy affecting elderly people living alone is almost ihe only vitamin deficiency disease of dietetic origin seen in British adults (Fig. 2.ID). In its most florid form it may present with extensive ecchymosis. In Asian immigrants, vitamin D deficiency used to be quite common and probably resulted from differences in dietary intake and absorption of the vitamin and from its decreased formation in the skin.

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