Brodie’s subacute osteomyelitis or Brodie’s abscess

Brodie’s abscess is a localized form of subacute osteomyelitis.



This entity was first described by Brodie in 1836.



It is less common than acute hematogenous osteomyelitis.

The ability to identify the causative organism is more limited.



Low virulence staphylococcus aureus is cultured in 50% of the cases.



The location of involvement is more diverse, occurs most commonly in the long bones of lower extremities.



Children with subacute osteomyelitis are older averaging 7.5 years of age.

The onset is usually insidious and mild symptoms may be present for more than 2 weeks before medical attention is sought.

Intermittent pain of long duration is the presenting complaint.



On examination, there will be local tenderness and mild elevation of temperature over the affected part.

Systemic symptoms and signs are minimal.

Total leukocyte count is generally normal, with the elevation of erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), and blood culture is negative.



A radiograph of the affected part demonstrates a lytic lesion with a sclerotic rim of bone.



Diagnosis often must be established by an open biopsy and culture.

Treatment of subacute osteomyelitis is surgical with appropriate antibiotic supplementation.

Subacute osteomyelitis results in very minimal long term consequences.