Since the experimental work of Wegner1 in 1872, showing the effect of phosphorus on growing bones in animals, it has been used more or less extensively as a therapeutic agent in disorders of ossification. Almost no postmortem or other evidence, however, has been offered as to the exact changes which it brings about in the bones of man.
Wegner administered 1/400 grain of yellow phosphorus daily to young growing dogs, cats and chickens over considerable periods of time, and observed definite changes which in case of the long bones may be thus summarized: There was increased new bone formation in the diaphysis which was especially marked along the epiphyseal lines, leading to the formation of a dense layer in the ends of the shaft which varied in thickness with the length of the period of phosphorus administration. When the period was short, the zone of dense bone was narrow;
PHEMISTER DB. THE EFFECT OF PHOSPHORUS ON GROWING, NORMAL AND DISEASED BONES. JAMA. 1918;70(23):1737-1743. doi:10.1001/jama.1918.02600230007001