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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Tibial Osteomyelitis Following Prehospital Intraosseous Access


Intraosseous (IO) access is a lifesaving alternative to peripheral or central venous access in emergency care. However, emergency physicians and prehospital care providers must be aware of the potential for infectious complications associated with this intervention. We describe the case of a HIV-negative, otherwise immunocompetent adult patient who underwent prehospital insertion of a tibial IO device. Following successful resuscitation, the patient developed tibial osteomyelitis requiring multiple operative debridements, soft tissue coverage, and several courses of prolonged antimicrobial therapy. Skin antisepsis prior to device insertion followed by early device removal are important strategies for reducing the risk of infection associated with IO access.

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