Periostitis is an inflammation of the periosteum, the thin layer of tissue that covers the outside of the bones. Various causes can cause this condition, often affecting the body’s long bones, but it can also occur in the jawbone.
Inflammation of the periosteum in the jaw area can result from bacterial infections, trauma, dental abscesses, overuse (e.g. from grinding teeth or unusual jaw movements), tumours or as a complication after dental treatment or surgery.
Typical symptoms of periosteum inflammation are pain and swelling in the affected area. The pain can be sharp and intense and is increased by pressure or movement. Additionally, redness of the skin over the affected periosteum and, in some cases, fever may occur.
The periostitis diagnosis is usually based on clinical symptoms, medical history and physical examination. Imaging procedures such as X-rays, digital volume tomography (DVT), computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can confirm the diagnosis and rule out other diseases.
Treatment for periosteum inflammation depends on the underlying cause. In the case of bacterial infections, it usually consists of administering antibiotics. In the case of periosteum inflammation caused by local trauma or overuse, it may be necessary to protect the affected area, clean it regularly and administer anti-inflammatory medication. Surgery may sometimes be required to remove the inflamed tissue or to place a drain if pus has accumulated.
Early diagnosis and treatment of periosteum inflammation is essential to prevent the inflammation from spreading and possible complications such as osteomyelitis (bone infection). Regular dental checkups and good oral hygiene can help reduce the risk of periostitis.