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Clin Infect Dis. 1993 Jun;16(6):761-5.

Brucellar sacroiliitis: findings in 63 episodes and current relevance.

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  • 1Infectious Disease Service, Hospital de Bellvitge, Universidad de Barcelona, Spain.


Between 1974 and 1989 we prospectively observed 530 patients with brucellosis. The findings for 62 patients (42 males and 20 females; mean age, 34.7 years) with 63 episodes in which the sacroiliac joint was involved (the most frequent osteoarticular location [11.7%]) were analyzed. Ten of the older patients (mean age, 55.3 years) had concomitant spondylitis. Systemic symptoms were usually important, and characteristic pain and findings of sacroiliitis were observed in approximately 75% of cases. Blood cultures were positive for Brucella melitensis for 44 patients. The most frequent radiographic findings were blurring of articular margins (42 cases) and widening of the sacroiliac space (20 cases). No radiographic anomalies were detected in 13 cases. Results of 99mTc and gallium-67 bone scans were abnormal in approximately 90% of cases (abnormalities were often mild). Overall, clinical, radiographic, and isotopic bone scan findings were sensitive and useful, although they were occasionally minimal or difficult to evaluate, making diagnostic findings confusing or misleading. Brucellar sacroiliitis is a mild disease associated with a good outcome similar to that observed for patients with uncomplicated brucellosis.

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