What is Osteomyelitis – bone infection?

Osteomyelitis is a bone infection that can be caused by bacteria, mycobacteria, or fungi. Though it occurs most often in younger and older populations, people of all age groups can develop infection. Infection in the bone can cause the soft, inner part (bone marrow) to swell. As a result, the swollen tissue compresses the blood vessels in the bone marrow and restricts or cuts off the blood supply to the area. Without an adequate blood supply, the body’s response to fight off infection cannot reach the bone properly. In this case, parts of the bone may die.


Most osteomyelitis results from invasion or infections in nearby soft tissues such as a diabetic foot ulcer. It can be caused by open fractures, surgery, or objects that pierce the bone. A decrease in the blood flow to the bone may cause infection, while in contrary, the blood stream can be responsible for carrying infection from another part of the body to the area. The most common bacteria causing osteomyelitis via the bloodstream in Staphylococcus aureus. This bacteria is spread by contact with a contaminated object or an opening in the skin.

People who use tobacco or nicotine products, have chronic health conditions like diabetes or kidney failure, or who have autoimmune diseases or are immunocompromised are more at risk of developing osteomyelitis.


  • Pain and tenderness
  • Swelling, warmth or redness
  • Difficulty weight bearing
  • Pain while the limb is at rest
  • Pain in one part of the bone
  • Fatigue
  • Fever, and weight loss.


Understanding the underlying causes and properly diagnosing your condition is the first step to treatment. We then provide a holistic approach to helping patients and their families through their surgical journey. Properly supporting you and/or your child, while educating you on the details helps us ensure the most successful outcomes possible. Our hands on, team approach makes patients feel supported throughout the whole treatment process.

To learn more about your condition and receive a diagnosis, schedule a virtual consultation with one of our experienced orthopedic doctors. During this consultation, all your questions will be answered as our specialists guide you through the evaluation process.

Conservative treatment

  • Intravenous antibiotics
  • Braces

Surgical treatment


Bone transport and other techniques

Case study

46 year old man with osteomyelitis of right tibial


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Highly specialized expert care at CLLC

At the Canadian Limb Lengthening Centre we offer complex deformity correction and limb lengthening surgeries performed by experienced surgeons with the most up to date technologies. When it comes to your care, and treatment of deformity and limb length discrepancy, our surgeons have extensive training and experience.