Patient Study

Outbreak of scurvy in Tana River County, Kenya: A case report

Peter Halestrap, Sue Scheenstra
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 10, No 1 | a1811 | DOI: | © 2018 Sue Scheenstra, Sue Scheenstra | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 24 April 2018 | Published: 25 October 2018

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Peter Halestrap, Family Medicine Department, Africa Inland Church, Kijabe Hospital, Kenya
Sue Scheenstra, Africa Inland Church Health Ministries, Kijabe Hospital, Kenya

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Over a five-month period, clinicians in Tana River County Kenya observed an increasing number of patients presenting to health facilities with a common collection of symptoms including fevers, joint pains and gum hypertrophy. After initial investigative and management strategies failed to reveal a diagnosis, patients were empirically commenced on ascorbic acid for presumed scurvy. This strategy resulted in the rapid resolution of symptoms in 65 patients within two weeks.


scurvy; nutrition; primary care


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