Soft tissue and bone infections from puncture wounds in children

Terese J. Laughlin, David G. Armstrong, Joseph Caporusso, Lawrence A. Lavery

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


We report on the prevalence of osteomyelitis, the prevalence of soft tissue infections, and the type and number of pathogens encountered in bone and soft tissue infections caused by puncture wounds in children. In addition, we seek to establish whether shoe gear plays a role in the flora in infected puncture wounds and if laboratory indices are indicative of the presence of infection. The group consisted of 44 nondiabetic children admitted to hospital for puncture wounds of the foot. Cultures were positive for osteomyelitis in 7 patients (16%), all involving the forefoot (P < .04). The most common pathogen in soft tissue infections was Staphylococcus aureus. The most common pathogen in osteomyelitis was Pseudomonas aeruginosa. There was no significant difference in the prevalence of osteomyelitis and soft tissue infection based on footwear. There were no cases of osteomyelitis encountered among barefoot children (P < .04). In 10 cases (83%), P aeruginosa infection (both soft tissue and bone) occurred while the patients were wearing tennis shoes (P < .04). In this study, the leukocyte count (normal in 29 patients [66%]), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (normal in 28 patients [64%]), and temperature (normal in 44 patients [95%]) did not have any predictive value in differentiating soft tissue infection from osteomyelitis in children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-128
Number of pages3
JournalWestern Journal of Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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