Melorheostosis is a rare medical condition where the cortex of the bone becomes wider than normal.
The condition can be easily diagnosed using X-Rays, and is very common in certain types of people. The Cortex may appear to look like dripping candle wax on the X-Ray, sliding off of the bone. It is just abnormal growth of the area.
It may also cause hyper-pigmentation appearing on the bone in the X-Ray, which makes it even easier for technicians to spot.
It tends to only affect one limb at a time, but in some rare cases does affect more than one limb. This can cause a number of problems for the individual. Sometimes Melorheostosis even affects the ribs, which is especially painful. Melorheostosis is known to affect the spine on occasion, but reports of that are fairly rare.
The condition causes severe pain, physical deformity and skin problems. If the growth is very large, it can cause circulation problems. For the worst cases, amputation must be considered if the patient would like to continue to live a normal life. The condition grows worse over time, and often can start out of nowhere.
The condition is often associated with osteosclerosis.
Melorheostosis is on the news lately because a contestant on CBS hit reality show Big Brother 12 named Matt, revealed that his wife had the disease.