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Indian J Radiol Imaging. 2009 Jul-Sep;19(3):176-86. doi: 10.4103/0971-3026.54873.

Imaging features of extraaxial musculoskeletal tuberculosis.

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1
Department of Radiology, Antwerp University Hospital, UZA, University of Antwerp, Wilrijkstraat 10, B-2650 Edegem and Department of Radiology, AZ Sint-Maarten, Duffel-Mechelen, Rooienberg 25, B-2570 Duffel, Belgium.

Abstract

Tuberculosis (TB) continues to be a public health problem in both developing and industrialized countries. TB can involve pulmonary as well as extrapulmonary sites. The musculoskeletal system is involved in 1-3% of patients with tuberculosis. Although musculoskeletal TB has become uncommon in the Western world, it remains a huge problem in Asia, Africa, and many developing countries. Tuberculous spondylitis is the most common form of musculoskeletal TB and accounts for approximately 50% of cases. Extraspinal musculoskeletal TB shows a predilection for large joints (hip and knee) and para-articular areas; isolated soft tissue TB is extremely rare. Early diagnosis and prompt treatment are mandatory to prevent serious destruction of joints and skeletal deformity. However, due to the nonspecific and often indolent clinical presentation, the diagnosis may be delayed. Radiological assessment is often the first step in the diagnostic workup of patients with musculoskeletal TB and further investigations are decided by the findings on radiography. Both the radiologist and the clinician should be aware of the possibility of this diagnosis. In this manuscript we review the imaging features of extraspinal bone, joint, and soft tissue TB.

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