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Clin Nucl Med. 2013 Dec;38(12):936-9. doi: 10.1097/RLU.0000000000000240.

Bone scintigraphy in children with cat scratch disease.

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  • 1From the Department of Nuclear Medicine, Hospital San Juan de Dios-Universidad de Chile, Santiago, Chile.



The objective of this study was to evaluate the degree and incidence of bone involvement in patients with cat scratch disease.


Patients admitted between 2004 and 2011 at the pediatric department for cat scratch disease and a positive serology for Bartonella henselae were identified. Only those having undergone a bone scintigraphy (BS) were included in this retrospective study.


Sixteen girls and 8 boys with a mean age of 7 years were studied. Bone scintigraphy was positive in 6 (25%), but only 2 had bone pain. Axial involvement was present in all 6 patients, and appendicular lesions in 3 of them. Three patients had a BS control, with improvement or normalization after treatment with antibiotics.


Bone involvement occurs infrequently in patients with cat scratch disease and is not always associated with specific signs. Cat scratch disease must be suspected in patients with fever of unknown origin presenting multifocal lesions on BS.

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