Short Definition Of Osteomyelitis

14 August 2023

Osteomyelitis, a type of infection of the bones, is a health problem. This problem is also called osteitis. It occurs as a result of trauma or injury to the bone and causes infection in the bone. One of the main symptoms is pain or fever, which should be taken into account. It occurs in many people, including children and adults, and progresses if left untreated. If it is advanced, it can cause serious damage to the organ where the bone is located, leading to more serious health problems. Therefore, osteomyelitis is a condition that must be treated.

What Is Osteomyelitis?

Osteomyelitis occurs as an infection in the bone marrow and is a rare health problem. It can occur in children or adults and can be acute or chronic. It occurs when an infection in one part of the body is carried by the blood to the bones for various reasons. From a medical point of view, osteomyelitis is caused by a Staphylococcus aureus infection. It can also be caused by the immune system or Camuratti-Engelman syndrome. Osteomyelitis, which harms health, is characterized by certain symptoms. In particular, it affects the life of the person by occurring in some parts of the body with pain. Furthermore, if it is at an advanced level, it can put the health of the person at risk, so it is a disease that should be taken into consideration and treated.

Osteomyelitis Symptoms

Unlike most diseases, osteomyelitis can progress without symptoms. Therefore, when the condition reaches an advanced stage, symptoms begin to appear. Or it may be diagnosed during an examination for a different disease. Almost everyone experiences the same symptoms. The following are some of the most common symptoms of osteomyelitis:

  • Fever
  • Difficulty moving the affected joint area
  • Pain in the joint
  • Redness and swelling of the joint affected by the infection

Pain, the most prominent symptom of osteomyelitis, is caused by pressure in the area where the bone is located. This pain progresses over time and cannot be expected to go away. If the pain persists for one week, you should consult a doctor. Osteomyelitis can also develop in the vertebrae. Therefore, back pain may also accompany these symptoms. This condition, which also affects the hip and leg bones, leads to advanced inflammation.

Causes Of Osteomyelitis

Osteomyelitis is not caused by a single cause but by many different causes. Staphylococcus, a common bacterium on the skin, is one of the main causes. However, fungi can also cause infections and lead to osteomyelitis. However, this is a rare condition. Infections caused by specific bacteria or fungi are thus the primary cause. These infections affect the bones and are transmitted through the blood. Other causes of osteomyelitis include:

  • Fractures
  • Injuries
  • Bacteria
  • Blood circulation

Osteomyelitis develops when an infection from anywhere in the body travels through the blood to the bone. Infections can also be transmitted during surgical bone repair for fractures, injuries, and severe perforations in the body. In addition to the basic causes, there are also some risk factors for osteomyelitisCirculatory disorders, surgical procedures, urinary catheters, advanced age, and immune-related conditions are all risk factors. This treatable condition should not be neglected. As a result, by observing the symptoms, a doctor should be consulted before they worsen.

Osteomyelitis Treatment

Before starting treatment for osteomyelitis, the doctor listens to the patient’s complaints and medical history. A physical examination is then performed to check for redness, swelling, and signs of heating at the site of infection. Some diagnostic procedures are performed to confirm the diagnosis. Blood tests, imaging tests (X-rays, MRIs, and CTs), and a bone biopsy are performed. The blood tests determine the levels of increase or decrease in the blood caused by the infection in the body. The joint where the pain is felt is then examined more closely with imaging tests such as X-rays, MRIs, or CTs. After examining the results, a diagnosis is made, and the treatment planning process begins.

Surgery is the most common treatment for osteomyelitis. This is because surgery removes infected and dead bone tissue. The general aim of the treatments is to prevent the disease from progressing and to reduce complications. Since these treatments will vary according to the severity of the disease, no single method can be used. In advanced cases of osteomyelitis, surgery is the treatment of choice. If it is a mild case, medication is applied. Treatment methods for osteomyelitis are brief as follows:


  • Medication: Since osteomyelitis is an infection, antibiotic medication is needed to fight it. This intravenous antibiotic medicationlasts about 6 weeks. In addition to antibiotics, if osteomyelitis is mild, painkillers can be used under the supervision of a doctor.
  • Surgery: Surgery is a treatment method used when osteomyelitis progresses. This treatment method is applied with different procedures depending on the level of the disease. Procedures used in the treatment of osteomyelitis include debridement, restoring blood flow to the bone, removing any foreign objects, amputating the limb, and draining the infected area.

The surgical procedure first aims to open the area around the infected bone and drain the pus and fluid accumulated in the infection. A debridement procedure is performed to remove the infected bone and tissue. Temporary fillers are placed to restore blood flow. Thanks to the graft, which has shown effective results in many surgical treatments, damaged blood vessels are repaired and new bone tissue is formed. Screws and plates placed during surgery can be removed later. Finally, a limb amputation procedure is performed to prevent further growth of the infected area.

These are the treatment methods applied for osteomyelitis, and there are some situations that the patient should pay attention to. First of all, smoking should be avoided during the healing process. Moreover, if the person has a chronic disease, he or she should provide controls accordingly.

To summarize, osteomyelitis is a bone infection. This condition, which does not show many symptoms, starts to show symptoms as it progresses. It is important to see a doctor after observing the symptoms for a certain period, as it can cause many health problems if it is advanced. The main cause of this condition, which can occur for many reasons, is bacteria. Unless it is advanced, antibiotic drugs are applied in its treatment. If it is at a certain level, surgical procedures may be required. During this process, it is important that the patient avoids bad habits and does not neglect the controls of his or her chronic disease. When all these are taken into consideration, osteomyelitis will heal within a certain period and help to eliminate complications.


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