Cannulation of an intraosseous (IO) site allows rapid access to the vascular space under emergency conditions. With increasing acceptance of this technique, some of its complications are now being fully appreciated. We present a case of a child who developed compartment syndrome and had a lower extremity amputation after infusion of fluids through an IO needle inserted in the proximal tibia. This case is presented to highlight the precautions that may prevent compartment syndrome. Additional emphasis is placed on early recognition and aggressive treatment of compartment syndrome to preserve function in the affected limb.
A 1-month-old infant with fever and irritability was treated at a community hospital.