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Acta Radiol. 2007 Jul;48(6):687-9.

Aspergillus meningitis and discitis from low-back procedures in an immunocompetent patient.

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  • 1Department of Radiology/Neuroradiology, University of Minnesota Medical Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.


We present a case of an immunocompetent patient who developed Aspergillus meningitis, subsequent to discitis, presumed to be from an epidural steroid injection. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the lumbar spine confirmed the diagnosis of discitis. Fluoroscopic-guided aspiration of the disc showed growth of Aspergillus fumigatus. MRI of the brain revealed involvement of the right third cranial nerve. Repeat MRIs demonstrated multiple leptomeningeal masses consistent with granulomatous meningitis. Meningitis is a rare complication of discitis, discogram, or epidural steroid injection. Aspergillus usually only infects immunocompromised patients, but rarely can affect immunocompetent patients.

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