Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) is the leading cause of preventable blindness in children and raises the risk of disease and death from severe infections. In pregnant women VAD causes night blindness and may increase the risk of maternal mortality. VAD is a public health problem in many developing countries. Supplying adequate vitamin A in high-risk areas can significantly reduce mortality. Conversely, its absence causes a needlessly high risk of disease and death from such common childhood infections as diarrheal disease and measles.
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