Osteomyelitis is one of the oldest infections to date. It is a rare infection of the bone which can be acute or chronic. It can affect all individuals regardless of age and affect any bone of the body. In children, osteomyelitis is usually found in long bones (i.e. tibia), while in adults it commonly affects the spine. Infants or elderly people are vulnerable to the infection, as they may not show clear symptoms, which may compromise their immune systems.
What Causes it
There have been three identified causes of osteomyelitis. First, it may be caused by trauma, surgery, or the insertion of prosthetic materials. Second, are infections in the blood that spread to the bone. Lastly, a diabetic foot infection or any other reason that results in a lack of blood flow can also cause osteomyelitis to develop. Therefore, the risk factors surrounding the infections include having diabetes or drug use that involves the use of needles or puncturing the skin.
Symptoms of osteomyelitis can be, but are not limited to, open wounds to the bone, skin lesions, or bone pain. Patients often report limited movement in joints, chills and swelling of the infected bone. The development of the infections varies, and may take as long as two years to develop from acute osteomyelitis to chronic osteomyelitis. Patients suffering from chronic osteomyelitis will have long-term pain and swelling, which makes it crucial to identify the infection before it develops. A failure to treat the infection will lead to long-term deterioration of your quality of life. For infants and older adults, it’s crucial to monitor them and look for any swelling, redness, or warmth in possibly infected areas.
If not treated, osteomyelitis can lead to impaired growth in children, the death of bones, and skin cancer. The advances in modern osteomyelitis can be cured with the cure rate resting at approximately 80%. When properly diagnosed, the infections can be cured without the surgical removal of any dead bones.
If you or someone you know may be suffering from osteomyelitis, we offer Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. It is a non-invasive treatment which aims to promote the body’s natural healing processes, that is administered in a pressurized room or tube, where we increase the amount of oxygen quickly so your lungs collect more oxygen. Your body will transport more oxygen through red blood cells, which will get dissolved into your body fluids and bones. The additional oxygen will reach new areas where there is not a lot of circulation as well as damaged tissues and increase the natural healing process through the strengthening of white blood cells. In addition, the extra oxygen promotes the growth and development of stem cells, which quickens the healing process. When used in conjunction with a medical plan, we can ensure that your osteomyelitis will be cured and you can get back to living a pain-free life.