Registered Nurse (RN)
Fundamentals of Nursing
Vitamins & Minerals
Beriberi (Thiamine Deficiency)

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Beriberi (Thiamine Deficiency)

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Beriberi (Thiamine Deficiency)

Berries and Thigh-man
Beriberi develops due to thiamine (B1) deficiency. Beriberi is described as dry or wet. Dry beriberi is characterized by symmetric polyneuritis affecting both sensory and motor components of the distal extremities leading to symmetrical extremity muscle wasting. Wet beriberi has additional cardiac involvement including cardiomegaly, dialated cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and peripheral edema.
Thiamine Deficiency
Thigh-man Tied-up

Thiamine (B1) deficiency can lead to beriberi and Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. Thiamine deficiency is more common in alcoholics and people from third world countries solely eating polished rice.

Dry Beriberi
Berries on dry land

Dry beriberi is characterized by symmetric polyneuritis affecting both sensory and motor components of the distal extremities, leading to symmetrical extremity muscle wasting.


A neurological disorder that occurs when multiple nerves throughout the body are damaged simultaneously. Polyneuritis is a key component of dry beriberi.

Muscle Wasting
Muscle Waste-basket

Symmetrical loss of muscle mass is commonly seen in dry beriberi.

Wet Beriberi
Wet Berries

Wet beriberi is the term used for thiamine deficiency with cardiovascular involvement.

Dilated Cardiomyopathy
Dilated Heart and mayo-jar with party-hat

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a condition in which the heart becomes weakened and enlarged and cannot pump blood efficiently throughout the body.


Edema is an abnormal accumulation of fluid beneath the skin or cavities of the body that produces swelling. Edema is a common manifestation of wet beriberi.


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