Osteodystrophy (os-tee-oh-DIS-truh-fee) is a general term for defective or abnormal bone development.
Bones are mostly made of a protein called collagen and a substance called calcium phosphate. This is why calcium is important for building and maintaining strong bones. But a number of conditions can affect the way a person's body breaks down and uses minerals like calcium and phosphorus to build bones. This can cause bones to form abnormally or break down too quickly.
Osteodystrophy is usually a complication of kidney disease. In these cases, it is called renal osteodystrophy. Renal osteodystrophy can cause skeletal deformities, slowed growth, bone and muscle pain, knock-knees, and bowlegs. Sometimes liver disease can also cause osteodystrophy in a condition called hepatic osteodystrophy.
Osteodystrophy is commonly associated with conditions like osteoporosis (decreased bone strength), osteitis fibrosa (soft, deformed bones), and osteomalacia (softening and weakening of bones due to a lack of vitamin D, calcium, or phosphate). Osteomalacia in children is called rickets.
Treatment for osteodystrophy involves treating the condition that is affecting bone development and treating any symptoms as they appear.
Many of the conditions that cause osteodystrophy respond well to treatment with medications, supplements, and changes in diet.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.
|U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) The FDA is responsible for protecting the public health by ensuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, medical devices, our nation's food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation.|
|American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) The AAP is committed to the health and well-being of infants, adolescents, and young adults. The website offers news articles and tips on health for families.|
|The National Osteoporosis Foundation This site educates the public about osteoporosis, prevention, and news and stories affecting bone health.|
|American Academy of Family Physicians This site, operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), provides information on family physicians and health care, a directory of family physicians, and resources on health conditions.|
|Milk Matters: Calcium Education from the National Institutes of Health Milk Matters is a public health education campaign launched by the National Institutes of Health to promote calcium consumption among tweens and teens, especially during the ages of 11 to 15, a time of critical bone growth.|
|Minerals Just like vitamins, minerals help your body grow, develop, and stay healthy. Find out more about minerals in this article for kids.|
|Calcium and Your Child Milk and other calcium-rich foods help build strong, healthy bones. But more than 85% of girls and 60% of boys don't get enough calcium each day.|
|Vitamins and Minerals Vitamins and minerals are nutrients that the body needs to work properly. They boost the immune system, promote normal growth and development, and help cells and organs do their jobs.|
|Mineral Chart Your body needs minerals to work properly. They boost the immune system, are essential for normal growth and development, and help cells and organs do their jobs.|
|Common Childhood Orthopedic Conditions Flatfeet, toe walking, pigeon toes, bowlegs, and knock-knees. Lots of kids have these common orthopedic conditions, but do they represent medical problems that can and should be corrected?|
|Osteoporosis Osteoporosis means that someone's bones are weakened. Find out more in this article for kids.|
|Bones, Muscles, and Joints Without bones, muscles, and joints, we couldn't stand, walk, run, or even sit. The musculoskeletal system supports our bodies, protects our organs from injury, and enables movement.|
|A to Z: Osteoporosis Mostly affecting older people, osteoporosis is a disease that weakens the bones, causing them to become brittle and easily fractured.|
|Problems With Legs and Feet Some kids have problems with their legs and feet. Find out more in this article for kids.|
|Bones, Muscles, and Joints Our bones, muscles, and joints form our musculoskeletal system and enable us to do everyday physical activities.|
|A to Z: Genu Varum Learn about common childhood orthopedic conditions and conditions that affect the legs and knees.|
|A to Z: Genu Valgum Learn about common childhood orthopedic conditions and conditions that affect the legs and knees.|
|Calcium Your parents were right to make you drink milk when you were little. It's loaded with calcium, a mineral vital for building strong bones and teeth.|
What to expect when coming to Akron Children's
For healthcare providers and nurses
Residency & Fellowships, Medical Students, Nursing and Allied Health
For prospective employees and career-seekers
Our online community that provides inspirational stories and helpful information.