Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone by bacteria. Often, a source for the bacteria is an opening in the skin. Often, if the ulcer probes to bone, it is a good sign that osteomyelitis may be present. An X-ray is also ordered, however there is a delay of 14-21 days before any osteomyelitis shows up on MRI. An MRI is often ordered because it is more sensitive than a probe to the bone and X-ray to diagnose osteomyelitis.
The treatments for osteomyelitis include amputation, osseous debridement, or conservatively, 4-6 weeks of antibiotic management. A bone biopsy may be taken to obtain the exact strain of bacteria, and then working with the infectious disease specialist, your physician at One Oak Medical will tailor a course of IV antibiotic infusions for you if no surgical options exist or if you defer surgical options.