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Year : 2009  |  Volume : 43  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 36-39

Outcome of painful bone marrow edema of the femoral head following treatment with parenteral iloprost

Orthopaedic Hospital Vienna-Speising, Speisinger Strasse 109 Vienna, Austria

Correspondence Address:
Roland Meizer
Orthopaedic Hospital Vienna-Speising, Speisinger Strasse 109 Vienna
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-5413.45321

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Background: Bone marrow edema (BME) is a common cause of hip pain. The aim of the study was to assess the efficacy of the vasoactive drug iloprost in the treatment of BME of femoral head. Materials and Methods: We reviewed 27 patients (19 male, 8 female) with BME of the femoral head. Their mean age was 53.7 10.8 years. All patients were treated with iloprost, a vasoactive drug that dilates arterioles and venules, reduces capillary permeability and suppresses platelet aggregation. The therapy comprised a series of five infusions with 20 to 50 μg iloprost over 6 h on 5 consecutive days each. Weight bearing was reduced for up to 3 weeks, depending on the severity of symptoms. Pain at rest as well as under stress was assessed with a semi quantitative scale from before and 4 months after therapy. MRI investigations were done before and repeated 4 months after therapy. Results: At the clinical follow up of four months after therapy, the pain level at rest had diminished by a mean of 58.3% ( P < 0.0001). Pain under stress decreased by a mean of 41.9% ( P < 0.0001). On MRI, 20 patients had a significant reduction of BME size or complete normalization and 4 showed no change. Worsening of the MRI pattern was found in 3 patients. Conclusion: The authors conclude that the use of parenteral iloprost might be a viable method in the treatment of BME of femoral head.

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