spinal pyogenic osteitis

Last reviewed 01/2018

Pyogenic infection of the spinous bone is rare. It is difficult to clinically discriminate from Pott's disease - tuberculosis of the spine - so needle biopsy or pus aspiration should be used for bacteriological culture.

Clinically, the presenting symptoms are of pain and stiffness in the back which may be of rapid of insidious onset.

The causal agent is predominantly Staphylococcus, but Salmonella spp. and Brucella spp. may invade. The vast majority of cases resolve after systemic administration of the appropriate antibiotic.