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Septic arthritis (SA) and osteomyelitis (OM) can present as medical emergencies in children. Typically, antimicrobial treatment for bone and joint infections is between 1 and 2 weeks of intravenous treatment followed by an oral antibiotic course of 2–4 weeks.1 2 However, recent data from a large randomised controlled trial in adults3 show that oral therapy is non-inferior to intravenous therapy. Short intravenous courses reduce length of hospital stay, support antimicrobial stewardship and improve patient quality of life. We describe the epidemiology of bone and joint infections at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, over the last decade in order to inform improved management.
We identified cases of SA and OM from September 2009 to February 2019 using hospital discharge clinical coding data. Inclusion criteria were (1) children <16 years of age (2) with clinical or radiological features typical of SA or OM …
Contributors SK and DFK conceptualised and designed the study. MA collated the data. MA and XL analysed the data. MA and SK wrote the first draft of the manuscript. AJP, TT and DFK supervised the data collection and analysis, and critically reviewed the manuscript for important intellectual content.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.