Bones are important, and that is for a fact. This is why it is hard to have any illness that may affect the bones. One condition that can be a great burden to the bones, as well as for the health is osteomyelitis. This is an infection of the bone, which may affect about 2 in every 10, 000 people. Well, this condition is obviously a serious one. If you want to know about the causes, symptoms, as well as the treatments for osteomyelitis, feel free to give this article a read.
Osteomyelitis: What is this condition?
As stated earlier, osteomyelitis is an infection of the bones, which is commonly due to bacteria. Furthermore, this condition may either be chronic or acute. Also, it commonly occurs as a consequence of a particular infection in a part of the body, which is transported all throughout the bloodstream into the bone in the distant position. Amongst the teens and children, the long bones in the legs and in the arms are the most affected ones. Moreover, in adults, osteomyelitis affects the spines or the hips’ vertebrae most frequently.
Moreover, osteomyelitis is an inflammation an infection of either the bone of the bone marrow. It may occur in the event that the fungal or bacterial infection goes into the bone tissue coming from the bloodstream, because of a surgery or an injury. There are about 80% of the cases of osteomyelitis that develop due to an open wound.
Additionally, osteomyelitis is a rare yet serious condition. The bones may become infected in a lot of ways. For instance, the infection may infect one part of the body and then it will spread into the bloodstream in the bones, or if there is an open fracture or a surgery, you may get exposed to bone infection.
Who is affected by osteomyelitis?
The condition may affect both children and adult. However, osteomyelitis does not occur more commonly in a specific race or gender. However, there are some who are more at risk of it, they are as follows:
- The elderlies.
- Intravenous abusers of drugs.
- Those who have sickle cell disease,
- People who have weak immune systems.
- Patients that are receiving hemodialysis.
- Those who have diabetes.
Causes of Osteomyelitis
Most of the cases of osteomyelitis, they are caused by the staphylococcus bacteria, the type of germs, which is usually located on the skin or even in the nose.
The germs may enter a bone thru a number of ways, including:
- Open wounds: the germs may enter the body if you have a broken bone. The direct contamination may also happen in the even of surgeries to be able to replace the joints or repair any fractures.
- Infected tissue: the severe perforation wounds may carry germs deep inside the body. Moreover, in this type of injury comes in contact with the infection, the germs may spread to the nearby bones.
- In the bloodstream: the germs in some other parts of the body may travel through the bloodstream to make the spot in a bone weaker. In children, the condition most usually happens in various soft areas of the bones.
Symptoms of Osteomyelitis
The symptoms of osteomyelitis may include the following:
- Drainage of the pus into the skin.
- Uneasiness, general discomfort, or ill feeling.
- Warm feeling and swelling in the area.
- Tenderness and/or pain in the area.
In addition to the symptoms, here are some more that may be in association with the condition:
- Changes in the walking pattern, which is painful, especially in yielding limp.
- Swelling of the legs, feet, and ankles.
- Lower back pain.
- Excessive sweating.
Treatments for Osteomyelitis
The treatments for osteomyelitis actually depend on what type of osteomyelitis it is.
Here, the infection may start no less than 2 months after the occurrence of injury, primary infection, or the initiation of the underlying condition.
The patients commonly need both surgery and antibiotics to be able to repair the bone damage.
The surgery may involve the following:
- Stabilizing the bones that are affected
- Removal of foreign objects
- Restoration of the flow of the bone
Here, the infection may develop within just 1 to 2 months of an injury, primary infection, or the initiation of underlying disease. The treatments here may depend on its severity, and if there is any bone damage. In the event that there is no bone damage, the treatment may be the same as the acute osteomyelitis.
In this particular type of osteomyelitis, the infection may develop within just 2 weeks of the injury. The pain may get intense, and the condition may be life-threatening. A course of antifungal or antibiotic treatments for osteomyelitis may be effective. However, if the infection is due to MRSA or some other drug-resistant bacteria, the patient may opt for a longer course of treatment and various medications.
This condition is so sudden, we know that. However, it is always us who can prevent it from happening. Those who are susceptible to infections must be careful to be able to avoid cuts and scrapes. Or in the event of cut and scrapes, cleaning it all at once is necessary.