Differential diagnosis of Charcot arthropathy and osteomyelitis.

: Foot problems are common causes of morbidity in patients with diabetes mellitus. Foot ulcers are the leading cause of hospitalization in diabetic patients. Bones may be involved in two different clinical conditions: osteomyelitis and Charcot osteoarthropathy. Osteomyelitis usually develops by spreading from contiguous soft tissue to underlying bone. Charcot foot is deformation of foot as a result of muscle athrophy, bone and joint structure changes in a joint as a secondary complication of neuropathy. To distinguish bone infection from non-infectious bone disorders as in Charcot joint may be difficult, especially if there is no skin ulceration. So, the mere absence of skin ulcers does not exclude the diagnosis of osteomyelitis.

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