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Intravenous pamidronate in the treatment of sternoclavicular hyperostosis

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The SAPHO syndrome (synovitis, acne, pustulosis, hyperostosis and osteitis) is a rare clinical entity in which osteosclerosis and osteolysis are consistent radiological findings. We present a patient with SAPHO syndrome manifesting as painful sternoclavicular hyperostosis treated successfully with pamidronate. For the first time, a reduction in isotope bone scan activity was documented in parallel to a favourable clinical response. Bisphosphonates have potent antiosteoclastic and anti-inflammatory effects. By virtue of their dual effects on bone remodelling and inflammation, they seem an appropriate therapy in the management of SAPHO syndrome. This case demonstrates the efficacy of pamidronate, both clinically and radiologically, as first line therapy for patients with isolated hyperostosis.

Keywords: SAPHO syndrome; hyperostosis; pamidronate

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Rheumatology, The Queen Elizabeth Hospital and

Publication date: September 1, 2006

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