Osteomyelitis in infants and children. A review of 163 cases

Am J Dis Child. 1975 Nov;129(11):1273-8. doi: 10.1001/archpedi.1975.02120480007004.


One hundred sixty-three cases of osteomyelitis in infants and children were seen at our hospital during the past 15 years. There were twice as many boys as girls. Staphylococcus aureus was the major etiologic agent, being identified in 61% of the cases. Gram-negative bacteria were responsible for only 14 cases (9%). The femur, the tibia, or the humerus were affected in 103 of the 152 patients with single bone involvement. Ostoemyelitis of more than one bone was seen in 11 cases (7%). Associated joint infectin was confirmed in 29 patients. There were no deaths. Surgical drainage was carried out in 81 cases (50%). Ten patients had recurrent or persistent drainage and one developed a Brodie abscess. Of the patients with S aureus osteomyelitis, chronic disease occurred in 19% of those receiving parenterally administered antibiotics for three weeks or less, but in only one patient (2%) of those who received parenteral antibiotics longer than three weeks.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chronic Disease
  • Drainage
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infections / complications
  • Joint Diseases / complications
  • Male
  • Osteomyelitis* / complications
  • Osteomyelitis* / microbiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Factors