Kedar Deogaonkar, Adel Ghandour, Alwyn Jones, Sashin Ahuja, Kathleen Lyons

August 2008, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 248 - 252 Case Report Read Full Article 10.1007/s00586-007-0516-6

First Online: 03 October 2007

Chronic relapsing multifocal osteomyelitis (CRMO) is a rare condition. It commonly affects the clavicle and pelvis. Rarely it can affect the spine. Spinal deformity due to CRMO is rare. We report a case of acute scoliosis due to CRMO. A 10-year-old girl with CRMO presented with acute painful scoliosis of her spine. She was neurologically intact. Imaging suggested a neoplastic process involving T10, L2 and L3. Further imaging and subsequent biopsy was performed and a diagnosis of CRMO was established. Spinal involvement with deformity is uncommon. It is commonly misdiagnosed as infection or a neoplasm and unnecessary aggressive surgical and antibiotic therapy instituted. A high index of suspicion is needed to diagnose this disease and thus manage it appropriately. This patient with a previously normal spine had a long right sided thoracic scoliosis. We think that the particular pattern of scoliosis was a protective mechanism to offload the right sided T10 vertebral pedicle. Prognosis is generally good although the disease can relapse and remit over many years. At 9 months follow up, the lesions were resolving and the deformity had resolved. CRMO presenting as acute scoliosis is rare and to our knowledge this is the second recognised case in the reported world literature.

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