Objective: Tropical pyomyositis (TP), a disease of varied aetiology, has been reported frequently from Africa and Latin America. However there are only a few reports from India.
Material and methods: Between January 1992 to June 1999, 26 patients with TP were admitted to Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research Chandigarh, a tertiary care centre in north-west India and formed the study material.
Results: The disease was more common in young adults with male to female ratio being 5:2. In majority, presenting features were muscle pains (100%) and fever (81%). The diagnosis was confirmed by aspirating pus from the involved muscle. The pus grew organisms in 41.7% patients and methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus was the commonest causative organism. Blood cultures were positive in 14.3% of cases. The common complications were bronchopneumonia (23.1%), empyema (19.2%) and venous thrombosis (15.4%). In three patients, the disease occurred in association with tuberculosis of dorsal-lumbar spine. The overall mortality was low (7.7%).
Conclusions: TP is not an uncommon disease in India. Though the presenting features were similar to earlier studies, complications varied and mortality was low. An early recognition and aggressive treatment helps in decreasing morbidity and mortality.