Heterotopic Ossification: A Review of Symptoms and Treatment
Heterotopic ossification (HO) is the abnormal development of bone tissue within soft tissue. Its etiology and pathology are uncertain. This condition is often seen near one or more joints in people who have sustained traumatic injuries of varying types. Symptoms include localized swelling, pain, increase in temperature, and loss of the joint's range of motion at the affected site. Further testing generally reveals an increase in serum alkaline phosphatase, a positive three‐phase bone scan, and the identification of bone formation on radiographs. A review of the literature reveals that common treatment options include range‐of‐motion exercises to maintain joint function, pharmacologic intervention, possible irradiation of the site, and surgical removal of ankylosing bone. The rehabilitation nurse must be aware of this medical complication to participate in its identification and treatment, as well as to be effective in counseling and educating patients and their families. 1994 Association of Rehabilitation Nurses
School of Nursing
Hinck, Susan M. "Heterotopic ossification: a review of symptoms and treatment." Rehabilitation Nursing 19, no. 3 (1994): 169-173.