Keshan Diease

Keshan Diease is a type of Endemic Cardiomyopathy caused by the dietary deficiency of Selenium (a trace element).

Keshan disease is a congestive cardiomyopathy caused by a combination of dietary deficiency of selenium. It named after Keshan County, Northeast China, where symptoms were first noted. These symptoms were later found prevalent in a wide belt extending from northeast to southwest China, all due to selenium-deficient soil. The disease peaked in 1960-1970.

The disease afflicts children and women of child bearing age, characterized by heart failure and pulmonary edema.

It has previously been linked to the coxsackie B virus. Current research suggests that the lack of selenium results in a more virulent strain of the coxsackievirus becoming the dominant viral species present in the population of virus, but the mechanism of this selection event is presently unclear.

Related MCQ:

1. Endemic cardiomyopathy in children is linked to the. deficiency of
(a) zinc
(b) cobalt
(c) selenium
(d) chromium

Answer: c

2. Keshan disease is the result of which deficiency :

A. Magnesium
B. Folic acid
C. Selenium
D. Biotin
E. Vitamin E

Answer: C


1. Other disease related to selenium deficiency is Kashin–Beck disease.
2. Signs and symptoms of deficiency of selenium
  • Fatigue
  • Symptoms of muscle weakness
  • Muscular pain
  • Muscular inflammation
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Enlargement of heart
  • Cardiac arrhythmia
  • Joint pain
  • Symptoms of swollen joints
  • Cretinism
  • Mental retardation
  • Growth retardation
  • Red blood cell fragility
  • Cataract formation
  • Macular degeneration
  • Pancreas degeneration
  • Symptoms of reproductive disorders
  • Miscarriage
  • Hair and skin discolouration

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