If you live with a chronic condition like diabetes or kidney failure, you’re at risk of developing a bone infection. At Wound Evolution - Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine in Fort Worth, Texas, wound care specialists Ashley Huddleston, MD, Autumn Savage, DO, CWS-P, and the team provide advanced holistic treatments to ease the uncomfortable symptoms of bone infections. To schedule an appointment, call or book online today.
A bone infection, or osteomyelitis, is a rare condition that causes one or more bones to become swollen and inflamed. It can occur when an infection travels through your bloodstream or when an infection spreads to your bone from nearby tissue.
Anyone can develop a bone infection, but it’s especially common in smokers and people with chronic health conditions. Thanks to modern medicine, it’s possible to treat bone infections, but surgery is usually necessary.
Symptoms of a bone infection depend on the severity and location. Telltale signs include:
Some people don’t experience any symptoms. This is particularly true for older adults, infants, and people with compromised immune systems.
If you experience a serious puncture wound or undergo orthopedic surgery, you’re more likely to develop a bone infection. If you notice any signs of a bone infection, such as worsening bone pain or a high fever, make an appointment at Wound Evolution right away.
To diagnose a bone infection, the team at Wound Evolution - Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine conducts a physical exam and asks about your symptoms and lifestyle. During the exam, your provider gently presses on the affected bone, looking for signs of swelling, tenderness, or warmth.
Next, your provider orders blood tests. If you have elevated levels of white blood cells, it indicates that your body is fighting an infection. A blood test can’t diagnose a bone infection, but it can give your provider clues to determine other tests you might benefit from.
If necessary, your provider might also order X-rays, an MRI, or a CT scan. These imaging tests provide detailed pictures of your bones, joints, and soft tissue.
Bone infections almost always require surgery. During your operation, the team at Wound Evolution - Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine drains the affected area, removes the diseased or dead bone and tissue, and restores blood flow to your bone.
Following your operation, your provider connects you to IV antibiotics. You’ll receive several IV treatments over the course of six weeks, combined with a course of oral antibiotics.
If you smoke, it’s important you quit to prevent further complications.
If you're concerned about your risk of a bone infection, schedule an appointment at Wound Evolution - Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine. Call or book online today.