- Dryness with ulceration and perforation of the cornea, with absence of inflammatory reactions, occurring in cachectic children; results from severe vitamin A deficiency. SYN: xerotic keratitis. [kerato- + G. malakia, softness]
* * *ker·a·to·ma·la·cia .ker-ət-ō-mə-'lā-s(h)ē-ə n a softening and ulceration of the cornea of the eye resulting from severe systemic deficiency of vitamin A compare XEROPHTHALMIA
* * *n.a progressive nutritional disease of the eye due to vitamin A deficiency. The cornea softens and may become perforated. This condition is very serious and blindness is usually inevitable. See also xerophthalmia.
* * *ker·a·to·ma·la·cia (ker″ə-to-mə-laґshə) [kerato- + malacia] a corneal condition, usually bilateral, associated with vitamin A deficiency. It begins with xerotic spots (Bitot spots) on the conjunctiva, while the cornea becomes xerotic and insensitive (xerotic keratitis); as the condition progresses, the haze increases until finally the entire cornea becomes soft, and colliquative necrosis occurs.
Medical dictionary. 2011.