The human skeleton can be affected by a number of developmental disorders and genetic abnormalities. One of the most common developmental disorders of the skeleton is a spectrum of inherited conditions called osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) or brittle bone disease. Individuals with this disorder have fragile bones that are prone to fractures. There are various osteogenesis imperfecta types that result from mutations or genetic defects.
X-ray technologists often encounter patients with OI when they present for radiographic imaging of fractures. However, it can be difficult to tell the difference between OI (especially the milder osteogenesis imperfecta types) and non-accidental injuries. Let’s take a look at the causes, types, and symptoms of this condition, the role of DXA in diagnosis, and how to tell the difference between OI and abuse.