Rickets causes bone pain, slowed growth in children, dental problems, muscle loss and increased risk of fractures. The classic image of advanced rickets sufferers is of bow legs and a deformed chest and skull, with prominent frontal and parietal bones causing a distinctive "square headed" appearance. These deformities persist into adult life.
Treatment involves increasing dietary intake of calcium, phosphate and vitamin D. Exposure to sunshine, cod liver oil, halibut-liver oil, and viosterol are all sources of vitamin D.
Despite the name, rickets is not caused by Rickettsia infection. "Rickets" is a corruption of "rachitis", a disease of the "rachis", or spinal column.