March 1987

Pressure Sores and Underlying Bone Infection

Author Affiliations

From the Veterans Administration Medical Center and Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, the Departments of Medicine and Microbiology and Public Health, Michigan State University, East Lansing.

Arch Intern Med. 1987;147(3):553-555. doi:10.1001/archinte.1987.00370030157030

• Pressure sores are a serious complication of hospitalized and chronically ill patients. Evaluation for underlying bone infection can be made difficult by radiographic, nuclear imaging, and soft-tissue culture studies that are abnormal and suggest the presence of bone infection, when no infection is present. Evaluation by bone biopsy with histologic and microbiological studies can accurately and promptly diagnose whether bone infection is present. This allows appropriate treatment when infection is present, and prevents unneeded and potentially toxic antibiotic therapy when preliminary studies incorrectly suggest that infection is present.

(Arch Intern Med 1987;147:553-555)