[Singhalese, reduplication of beri, weakness]
A disease marked by peripheral neurologic, cerebral, and cardiovascular abnormalities and caused by a lack of thiamine. Early deficiency produces fatigue, irritability, poor memory, sleep disturbances, chest pain, anorexia, abdominal discomfort, and constipation. Beriberi is endemic in Asia, the Philippines, and other islands of the Pacific.
SYN: SEE: kakke
Deficiency is caused by subsistence on highly polished rice, which has lost all thiamine content through the milling process. Secondary deficiency can arise from decreased absorption, impaired absorption, or impaired utilization of thiamine.
Treatment consists of oral or parenteral administration of thiamine and eating a balanced diet.
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