Definition of osteomalacia in English:



mass nounMedicine
  • Softening of the bones, typically through a deficiency of vitamin D or calcium.

    • ‘Osteoarthritis, osteomalacia, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and other arthritic conditions may increase the risk of problems originating from surgical positioning.’
    • ‘If blood levels of calcium fall then calcium is withdrawn from bone, resulting in osteomalacia and osteoporosis.’
    • ‘Vitamin D deficiency can lead to bone disease: osteomalacia in adults, rickets in infants and children.’
    • ‘Calcium and vitamin D malabsorption dramatically increases the risk of osteoporosis and osteomalacia in patients with gluten-sensitive enteropathy.’
    • ‘The diagnosis of osteomalacia, made in the past by bone biopsy and more recently by measurements of bone mineral density, may be overlooked in some patients.’


Early 19th century modern Latin, from osteo-‘bone’ + Greek malakos ‘soft’.