What is Myositis Ossificans?

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Johns Hopkins All Children’s Sports Medicine - Myositis Ossificans

Dr. Patrick Mularoni, a specialist in pediatric sports medicine at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital, has shared his expertise to provide valuable information on a lesser-known condition that affects athletes: Myositis ossificans.

Myositis ossificans is a reaction to a bruise in a muscle that has been injured. During the healing of the bruise, calcium can become deposited in the bruise causing a hard bone like structure within the muscle.

The exact reason why this happens is unclear but it is known to happen more often in athletes with repetitive trauma to the same area before the bruised muscle has appropriate time to heal.

This condition occurs most commonly in contact sports and is most commonly seen in the quadriceps muscle of the thigh and the area of the upper arm.

This condition presents as a hard and painful area located at the site of a bruise which has been healing for 2-4 weeks.

In most athletes, if the area is allowed to heal appropriately this calcification or bone formation will resorb and go away on its own.

Evaluation of this condition includes getting X-rays to monitor the progression of the calcium formation. The most important aspects of therapy are avoidance of further trauma in the area affected and physical therapy to maintain motion in the affected extremity.

Sports Medicine at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital

A teenage boy jumps as his physical therapist watches his form at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital
The Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital sports medicine Program in St. Petersburg, Florida, is a multidisciplinary program dedicated to treating sports injuries in children, adolescents and young adults. Our mission is to provide the highest quality health care through evidence-based research in the treatment, education and prevention of sports injuries.

Our specialty care services meet the needs of each athlete and include primary care sports medicine, orthopaedics, emergency medicine, radiology, neurosurgery, nutrition, cardiology and sports rehabilitation.

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