Can osteomyelitis come back years later?

Can osteomyelitis lay dormant?

Many bone and joint infections are cleared with medication, surgery, or a combination of the two. However, for some people, osteomyelitis or septic arthritis may never completely go away. The bacteria can lie dormant in the body and return, even after treatment.

How often does osteomyelitis reoccur?

Despite the use of surgical debridement and long-term antibiotic therapy, the recurrence rate of chronic osteomyelitis in adults is about 30 percent at 12 months.

Can osteomyelitis recur?

Reactivation of osteomyelitis, even after a 50-year disease-free interval, has been reported in the literature (6). In daily clinical practice, these recurrences are not rare and usually occur at the prior anatomical site of infection without any history of concomitant disease, bacteremia, or new trauma.

How long can osteomyelitis be dormant?

Late onset osteomyelitis could occur up to 30 years after an initial complex fracture as an outburst of chronic silent osteomyelitis.

What happens if osteomyelitis is untreated?

Osteomyelitis is a bacterial, or fungal, infection of the bone. Osteomyelitis affects about 2 out of every 10,000 people. If left untreated, the infection can become chronic and cause a loss of blood supply to the affected bone. When this happens, it can lead to the eventual death of the bone tissue.

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What bone is the most common site of osteomyelitis?

Among children and teens, the long bones of the legs and arms are most frequently affected. In adults, osteomyelitis most often affects the vertebrae of the spine and/or the hips. However, extremities are frequently involved due to skin wounds, trauma and surgeries.

Can you fully recover from osteomyelitis?

Most cases of osteomyelitis are treatable. Chronic infections of the bone, however, may take longer to treat and heal, especially if they require surgery. Treatment should be aggressive because an amputation can become necessary sometimes. The outlook for this condition is good if the infection is treated early.

What is the prognosis for osteomyelitis?

Outlook (Prognosis)

With treatment, the outcome for acute osteomyelitis is often good. The outlook is worse for those with long-term (chronic) osteomyelitis. Symptoms may come and go for years, even with surgery. Amputation may be needed, especially in people with diabetes or poor blood circulation.

Can osteomyelitis lead to sepsis?

An infection of the bone, called osteomyelitis, could lead to sepsis. In people who are hospitalized, bacteria may enter through IV lines, surgical wounds, urinary catheters, and bed sores.

How long does osteomyelitis take to heal?

You’ll usually take antibiotics for 4 to 6 weeks. If you have a severe infection, the course may last up to 12 weeks. It’s important to finish a course of antibiotics even if you start to feel better. If the infection is treated quickly (within 3 to 5 days of it starting), it often clears up completely.

How long do you take IV antibiotics for osteomyelitis?

In chronic osteomyelitis, IV therapy for 2-6 weeks, followed by oral antibiotics for a total of 4-8 weeks, may be required. Prolonged courses may be required in neonates, immunocompromised or malnourished patients, patients with sickle cell disease, and patients with distant foci of infection (eg, endocarditis).

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Can a blood test detect osteomyelitis?

Blood tests may reveal elevated levels of white blood cells and other factors that may indicate that your body is fighting an infection. If osteomyelitis is caused by an infection in the blood, tests may reveal which germs are to blame. No blood test can tell your doctor whether you do or don’t have osteomyelitis.