Tag Archive for: Infants and children

Early Surgical Intervention in Children with a Suspected Diagnosis of Acute Septic Arthritis or Osteomyelitis: Is it Justified?

Volume 4 | Issue 2 | July-December 2018 | Page: 03-10 | Petnikota Harish

DOI- 10.13107/ijpo.2018.v04i02.011

Authors: Petnikota Harish

Vasudev Children’s Orthopaedics Centre, Bellary, Karnataka, India

Address of Correspondence
Dr. Petnikota Harish,
‘Vasudev’, Opp. Shanti Sishu Vihar School, Talur Road, Bellary – 583 103, Karnataka, India.
E-mail: harishportho@gmail.com


Context: Early surgical intervention is the key for good outcome in children with acute haematogenous osteomyelitis (AHO) or septic arthritis. Often there is an impasse to observe or intervene early when the diagnosis is inconclusive due to blunted clinical findings and equivocal investigations. Aim: This study is aimed at justifying early surgical intervention in these doubtful/suspected cases. Settings and
Design: This study was a retrospective review of AHO/septic arthritis treated by the author between August 2010 and January 2015. A new scoring system, haematogenous osteomyelitis and septic arthritis (HOMSA) score was developed to aid in classifying and decision-making. With a maximum score of 8, a score >6 in the absence of infection elsewhere or a score <6 with radiological evidence makes the diagnosis of AHO/septic arthritis definite. A score 6 without radiological evidence makes the diagnosis suspected/doubtful. Outcome was measured by a new discrete criterion for the upper and lower limbs.
Materials and Methods: The protocol was early surgical intervention in both the groups. In septic arthritis, open arthrotomy along with joint lavage and debridement was performed. In AHO, bone decompression with abscess drainage was performed. Initial parenteral administration of antibiotics was followed by oral antibiotic administration. Necessary adjuvant treatment was given.
Results: Thirty-four children with 40 sites of infection were identified. Among them, 50% were neonates. Only 4/40 children were treated conservatively. Following surgery, outcome was excellent-to-good in 92.8% of the children with doubtful/suspected diagnosis and 96.6% with definite infection. One child in each group who were treated surgically, and two children in the group with definite infection treated non-operatively had fair-to-poor outcomes. Conclusion: Early surgical intervention is justified even in children with a doubtful/suspected diagnosis of AHO or Septic Arthritis. The new scoring system, HOMSA Score, is a better tool to diagnose Acute septic arthritis or osteomyelitis, even with limited resources.
Keywords: Acute haematogenous osteomyelitis, Early surgery, Infants and children, Neonates, New outcome, Measure, New scoring system, Septic arthritis


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How to Cite this Article:  Harish P Early Surgical Intervention | in Children with a Suspected Diagnosis of Acute Septic Arthritis or Osteomyelitis: Is it Justified? | July-December 2018; 4(2): 03-10.


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