Heterotopic ossification is a disease in which mature bone rafts are formed in tissues after pregnant women give birth. Let’s figure out about this dangerous disease.
Ossification is the gradual transition of your baby’s skeletal bones from a fibrous or cartilage template to hard bone. This process takes place at different rates and is completed at different stages depending on what part of the body is developing and growing.
By week 12 of pregnancy the development of your baby’s bones is complete, and now the baby’s main task is to grow strong and healthy during the next six months. Almost all ossification takes place before your baby is born, however, there are two areas that will not complete ossification until the time of your child’s second birthday. These areas are the fontanels of the skull.
The fontanels are the two soft spots on a baby’s head that, during birth, enable the soft-bony plates of the baby’s skull to flex allowing the head to pass through the birth canal with relative ease in most cases. The rear fontanel takes about four months to close, while the front one takes between nine and 18 months.
To help your baby develop and grow strong bones, make sure your pregnancy diet is rich in a variety of fruits, vegetables, grains, and meats with high levels of the following vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamins A, C, and D
All of these are essential to provide optimum health for you and your baby during pregnancy. Getting these nutrients will help ensure the proper bone development and bone growth of your baby.
Heterotopic ossification is the result of metaplasia of mesenchymal cells and subsequent proliferation of osteoblasts. The trigger for this cell metabolism is not well understood, but maybe neurologically or fluid related. In women, after giving birth, the changes in sympathetic nerve connections after a brain or spinal cord injury or repeated trauma from chiropractic manipulation can also contribute to the transition.
Several conditions can promote heterotopic ossification. The most significant risk factor is a history of ectopic ablation, and nearly all pregnant women who have already had a localized punctate will continue to suffer if undergoing a major orthopedic procedure such as hip surgery.
Enlargement also forms in 10-30% of pregnant women with secondary neurological defects after conditions such as spinal cord or brain injuries. Patients with spinal cord injury are particularly susceptible to stray osteoporosis affecting large joints such as the groin, knee, shoulder, and elbow – always below the level of nerve damage – and cause heat, redness, pain, and decreased close range of motion.
Symptoms of Heterotopic Ossification
General symptoms such as fever and fatigue are not uncommon in severe cases. Differential diagnoses include diseases such as deep vein thrombosis, cellulitis, joint infections, hematomas, and fractures.
In mild and early ectopic chemotherapy, a three-phase bone scan is a valuable tool for determining chemotherapy, and this test can also evaluate maturity in advanced disease. CT and MRI also play essential roles, especially for pre-surgery evaluation, to check the extent (spread) of stray sacs and related blood vessels. CT also helps rule out other conditions like hematomas or calcified tumors.
Treatments of heterotopic ossification
For heterotopic ossification, short-term rest is necessary to minimize the inflammatory process. However, it is essential to continue rehabilitation programs that include mobilizing the affected joints within a painless range of motion. If joint manipulation causes increased pain or inflammation, this technique should be discontinued until the patient can tolerate it.
Some methods that reduce heterotopic ossification include radiation therapy, bisphosphonates, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). The role of NSAIDs in preventing ectopic osteochondrosis has been identified. NSAID also reduces 15-20% of the risk of postoperative osteochondrosis after giving birth.
Heterotopic ossification is a dangerous disease for women that needs to be considered carefully. All the treatments must go through the instruction of professional doctors to avoid side effects.
Tests are generally inaccurate except for increased alkaline phosphatase, sedimentation rate, and C-reactive protein, which usually increases just a few weeks after onset and are good indicators of disease activity. X-rays often have a diagnostic value in clear cases.