spinal tuberculosis

Last reviewed 01/2018

Pott's disease is tuberculosis of the spine, where any vertebra may be involved but particularly the lower thoracic and the upper lumbar regions are affected. This condition is rare in the West.

Spread is initially haematogenous to a vertebral body: it may then advance to a neighbouring joint cavity resulting in tuberculous arthritis. There is adjacent vertebral collapse in association with a paravertebral abscess. The abscess may track distally to endanger the spinal cord (causing spinal cord compression).