This is a bone infection that travels through the patient’s blood stream before reaching the bone. It may also spread from the tissue surrounding the affected area. This kind of an infection can occur when an injury has been exposed to bacteria and germs. This infection may be commonly found in children and it usually affects the long bones like the arms or the legs.
HOW IS OSTEOMYELITIS DIAGNOSED?
A physical exam shows bone tenderness and possible swelling and redness in the area around the bone.
Tests may include:
• Blood cultures
• Bone biopsy (the sample is cultured and examined under a microscope)
• Bone scan
• Bone x-ray
• Complete blood count (CBC)
• C-reactive protein (CRP)
• Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR)
• MRI of the bone
• Needle aspiration of the area of the affected bones
HOW IS OSTEOMYELITIS TREATED?
Antibiotics may be all that’s necessary to cure the bone infection. In severe or chronic cases of osteomyelitis, surgery may be used in combination with antibiotics. Surgery is most often used to remove damaged bone and drain pus from wounds. In cases when prosthesis that’s causing the infection, the doctor may remove and replace it with a new one. The doctor will also remove any dead tissue near or surrounding the infected area.
DID YOU KNOW?
Earlier considered to be an incurable condition, osteomyelitis can be successfully treated today by surgery followed by antibiotics.