Chronic Recurrent Multifocal Osteomyelitis (CRMO): advancing the diagnosis

Marion Roderick, Ripal Shah, Valerie Rogers, Adam Finn, Athimalaipet Ramanan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

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Chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis (CRMO) is a little known inflammatory bone disease occurring primarily in children and adolescents. Delays in referral and diagnosis may lead to prolonged courses of antibiotics with in-patient care, unnecessary radiation exposure from multiple plain radiographs or bone scans and repeated surgery including bone biopsies.
Children (aged < 18 years) diagnosed with CRMO between January 2005 and December 2012, reviewed at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children were included and all available data collected. Information regarding CRMO was sent to all orthopaedic surgeons in the region in 2009.

The aim of the study was to examine the features of the cohort, to examine the length of time to diagnosis and to explore the criteria used for diagnosis with and without biopsy.
Over an 8 year period, 41 patients were diagnosed with CRMO. Symptom onset occurred at a median of 9 years of age and time to diagnosis had a median of 15 months (range 0 - 92). Correlation coefficient analysis for time to diagnosis by year showed statistical significance with a decreasing trend. From the cohort data, diagnostic criteria were developed; applied retrospectively, 34 (83%) children may have been diagnosed using the criteria, without a biopsy.

The data suggest that increasing knowledge of this condition may shorten time to diagnosis. Use of the Bristol diagnostic criteria by an experienced clinician may obviate the need for biopsy in some patients.
Original languageEnglish
Article number47
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric Rheumatology
Publication statusPublished - 30 Aug 2016


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  • Autoinflammatory
  • Cohort
  • Chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis (CNO)


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