(redirected from Bone infection)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical.
Related to Bone infection: Bone Cancer


(ŏs'tēōmī'əlī`tĭs), infection of the bone and bone marrow. Direct infection of bone usually occurs through open fractures, penetrating wounds, or surgical operations. Infecting microorganisms may also reach the bone via the bloodstream, the most common means of bone infection in children. Osteomyelitis is characterized by pain, high fever, and formation of an abscessabscess,
localized inflamation associated with tissue necrosis. Abscesses are characterized by inflamation, which is due to the accumulation of pus in the local tissues, and often painful swelling.
..... Click the link for more information.
 at the site of infection. Infection may be caused by a variety of microorganisms, including staphylococci, streptococci, and other pathogenic bacteria. Unless treated vigorously with antibioticsantibiotic,
any of a variety of substances, usually obtained from microorganisms, that inhibit the growth of or destroy certain other microorganisms. Types of Antibiotics
..... Click the link for more information.
 and sometimes surgery, bone destruction may result.



an infectious, inflammatory process that involves first the bone marrow and then elements of one or more bones. Osteomyelitis may be nonspecific—that is, caused by pyogenic cocci or less commonly by the colon or other bacilli—and specific (tuberculous and syphilitic osteomyelitis). Nonspecific osteomyelitis, the more common form, may be hematogenous, in which case the causative agent is in the blood; may be secondary, that is, spread to bone from organs and tissues affected with an inflammatory disease; or may result from exogenous infection of bone from a wound, such as a gunshot wound or an open fracture. The most common forms of osteomyelitis are those that affect the diaphyseal parts of tubular bones; paronychia, which affects the phalanges of fingers; odontogenic osteomyelitis, which affects the jaw; and otogenic osteomyelitis, in which the temporal bone is affected. The disease can develop at any age, and the course may be acute, primary chronic, or chronic as a progression from the acute form. The hematogenous form is most widespread in infants, and the secondary form in adolescents and adults. Gunshot osteomyelitis often complicates the course of extensive wounds during war.

The first symptoms of osteomyelitis are a general and local elevation of temperature with chills, as in sepsis, severe pain in the inflammatory focus, and tenderness and restriction of movement in the affected segment. The disease is diagnosed at this time by roentgenography. Softening in the superficial tissues above the affected site and swelling and reddening in these tissues subsequently arise. Sequestration—formation of portions of the cortical layer of bone that are necrotic from lack of nutrition—is characteristic of osteomyelitis. Small sequestra are sometimes eliminated spontaneously through fistulas that form when purulent discharges break through the skin. Sequestration is a criterion for determining the severity of osteomyelitis and the extent of disability after recovery. In rare cases recovery occurs spontaneously, but the disease may subsequently recur.

Osteomyelitis is treated with anti-inflammatory agents and general and local antibiotics; immobilization and rest of the affected segment of the skeleton are essential. Early incision of the inflammatory focus by periosteotomy—dissection of the periosteum—is indicated. Paracentesis—surgical puncturing in order to aspirate fluid—is performed if inflammatory effusions have spread into the adjacent joints. Sequestra are removed in chronic osteomyelitis. Residual defects and deformities of the bones require conservative and operative treatment, a prerequisite of which is complete suppression of the inflammatory process.


Chaklin, V. D. Infektsionnye zabolevaniia kostei, sustavov i khriashchei. Sverdlovsk, 1937.
Fridland, M. O. Ortopediia, 5th ed. Moscow, 1954.
Vengerovskii, I. S. Osteomielit u detei. Moscow, 1964.



Inflammation of bone tissue and bone marrow.
References in periodicals archive ?
Mr Ashenhurst's sister Courtenay Craig, 42, who was also born in Barry but now lives in Los Gatos, California, said her brother went off the rails as a teenager after his bone infection almost killed him.
I expected that we would have more failures among bone infections than other kinds of infections like endocarditis or pneumonia, but we were surprised that we weren't able to cure almost half of the bone infections," she said at the conference, which was sponsored by the American Society for Microbiology.
13, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- BONESUPPORT(TM), an emerging leader in injectable bone substitutes for orthopedic trauma, bone infections and instrument augmentation related to orthopedic surgery, today announced that Lloyd Diamond, CEO of BONESUPPORT(TM), will provide a corporate overview at the Stifel 2015 Healthcare Conference in New York, NY, on November 18, 2015.
She said: "Doctors at first assumed it was a bone infection from a reaction to metal plates in my back after an op to correct a curvature in my spine.
Tests over seven weeks rule out leukaemia, bone infection, viral infection, chronic recurring multi-focal osteomyelitis, anaemia.
During his time in the hospital, his skill as a leading trauma and bone infection specialist was tested.
The final three chapters discuss advanced biomaterials and technologies, including bioreactors and synthetic scaffolds for orthopedic tissues engineering and polymer controlled release systems for management of bone infection.
Among the 57 patients, 27 had chronic osteomyelitis and 30 were free of bone infection.
The former Mansfield Town forward had a pin removed in August before a bone infection, following complications with the operation, meant he had to undergo further surgery in November.
They tried to save his leg, but in the end a bone infection set in and his right leg had to be amputated above the knee in order to save his life.
Although this agent is not usually used to treat bone infection, we used cotrimoxazole on the basis of evidence provided by several communications that indicated a superior efficiency to referential regimens (12).
Temporal bone infection is believed to be caused by the spread of the organism from the pharynx to the middle ear via the eustachian tube.