[Deficiency rickets: the current situation in France and Algeria].Pediatrie 1989; 44(4):259-64P
Persisting vitamin D deficiency rickets in France results from the climatic, environmental and geographic situation of this country. Although systematic administration of vitamin D supplements to infants greatly reduced the prevalence of rickets among infants, clinical and/or biological signs of vitamin D deficiency are still found in children and adolescents, mainly during the winter and in populations vulnerable for economic, cultural or religious reasons. Signs of vitamin D deficiency are also found, during the winter-spring seasons, in pregnant women and their newborns living in urban areas. Such vitamin D deficiencies could be overcome by vitamin D supplementation to susceptible populations. In Algeria, vitamin D deficiency rickets present a continuing public health problem. The persisting high incidence of rickets among children appears to result mainly from economic and cultural factors. Vitamin D supplementation and health education are mandatory to reduce the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency among pregnant women and the occurrence of vitamin D deficiency rickets in infants, whether breast-fed or not.