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SA Orthopaedic Journal

On-line version ISSN 2309-8309
Print version ISSN 1681-150X

SA orthop. j. vol.8 n.1 Centurion Jan. 2009




Tuberculosis - the masquerader of bone lesions in children



MN Rasool FCS(Orth)

Department of Orthopaedics, University of KwaZulu-Natal





Fifty-three children with histologically confirmed tuberculous osteomyelitis were treated between 1989 and 2007. The age ranged from 1-12 years. There were 65 osseous lesions (excluding spinal and synovial). Seven had multifocal bone involvement. Four basic types of lesions were seen: cystic (n=46), infiltrative (n=7), focal erosions (n=6) and spina ventosa (n=7). The majority of lesions were in the metaphyses (n=36); the remainder were in the diaphysis, epiphysis, short tubular bones, flat bones and small round bones. Bone lesions resembled chronic infections, simple and aneurysmal bone cysts, cartilaginous tumours, osteoid osteoma, haematological bone lesions and certain osteochondroses seen during the same period of study. Histological confirmation is mandatory to confirm the diagnosis of tuberculosis as several bone lesions can mimic tuberculous osteomyelitis.



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Dr MN Rasool
Department of Orthopaedics
University of KwaZulu-Natal
Private Bag 7
Congella, 4001
Tel: (031) 260 4297; Fax: (031) 260 4518



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