Zinc deficiency may be due to dietary lack, total parenteral nutrition without zinc supplementation, or as part of a generalised malabsorption. Rarely there is a genetic basis - acrodermatitis enteropathica.
- poor wound healing
- defective taste
- failure to thrive
- the syndrome of acrodermatitis enteropathica
Diagnosis is made by giving a therapeutic trial of zinc tablets; plasma levels are an unreliable indicator of zinc deficiency because the plasma level may be lowered, for example, in acute infection and after trauma.