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Pediatric Bone and Joint Infections

What are bone infections?

Bone infections, or osteomyelitis, involve inflammation of the bone, usually caused by a bacterial infection. In children, the bacteria are most often Staphylococcus aureus (staph infection) and is primarily carried through the blood.

Preschool-aged children account for about half of bone infection cases because of the rich blood supply in their growing bones. In both children and adolescents, bone infections happen most often in long bones of the legs and arms. If untreated, bone infection can cause severe complications, including:

  • Bone destruction
  • Abscesses (pockets of infected pus)
  • Infected joints (septic arthritis)
  • Deformities and disability resulting from ongoing infections
Children's Team

Children's Team

Providers

Kaleb Friend

L Kaleb Friend

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Sports Medicine, Foot and Ankle, Orthopaedic Trauma Specialist
Nada Harik

Nada Harik

Director, Fellowship Training Program
Infectious Diseases Specialist
Investigator, Children's National Research Institute
Ben Martin

Benjamin Martin

Associate Chief, Division of Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine
Spine, Hip, Orthopaedic Trauma Specialist
Jeffrey Peck, M.D.

Jeffrey Peck

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Hip, Spine, Orthopaedic Trauma Specialist
Sean Tabaie

Sean Tabaie

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Cerebral Palsy, Limb Lengthening and Deformity, Orthopaedic Trauma Specialist
Laura Tosi

Laura Tosi

Director, Bone Health Program
Orthopaedic Surgeon
Rare Bone Disease, Bone Health and Orthopaedic Trauma Specialist
Robert Wilson

Robert Wilson

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Hand and Upper Extremity Specialist
Megan Young

Megan Young

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Limb Lengthening and Deformity, Orthopaedic Trauma Specialist
Departments

Departments

Infectious Diseases

Our Division of Infectious Diseases is the major referral center for infectious diseases in the Washington, D.C., area, helping thousands of patients each year, and actively promoting prevention through community outreach and education.

Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine

From sprains and strains to complex congenital conditions, Children’s National Hospital offers one of the most experienced pediatric orthopaedic practices in the nation with experience in treating all areas from head to toe.