Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2019; 23 (2 Suppl): 117-128

DOI: 10.26355/eurrev_201904_17481

A systematic review: characteristics, complications and treatment of spondylodiscitis

L. Gentile, F. Benazzo, F. De Rosa, S. Boriani, G. Dallagiacoma, G. Franceschetti, M. Gaeta, F. Cuzzocrea

Department Public Health, Experimental and Forensic Medicine, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy. leandro.gentile01@universitadipavia.it


OBJECTIVE: This systematic review focuses on 5 key elements that may improve the decision-making process in spondylodiscitis: the infective agent, segmental instability, abscess development, neurological compromise and focus of infection.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We included 64 studies published between May 2012 and May 2017, that reported both a description of the discitis and comparative data regarding the disease and its complications.

RESULTS: The majority of cases were caused by Staphylococcus spp (40.3%) and involved the lumbosacral region (52.3%). 27.8% of cases were associated to neurological compromise, 30.4% developed an abscess, 6.6% were associated to instability, and 54.7% underwent surgery. The abscesses mostly involved the lumbosacral region (60.4%) with paravertebral localization; 32.6% of cases involved the thoracic region, showing mostly epidural localization; a small number of cases (7%) involved the cervical region, mostly with epidural localization. 95% of paravertebral abscesses were treated percutaneously, while 85.7% of epidural cases underwent “open” surgery. Spinal cord compression mainly occurred in the cervical region (55.9%), neurological deficit was observed in over half of cases (65%), and surgery was required in most of the cases (83.9%). The majority of cases of instability involved the lumbosacral region (53.3%) and underwent surgery (87%). The focus of infection was mostly lumbosacral (61%) and almost all cases (95%) were treated surgically.

CONCLUSIONS: Spondylodiscitis is a complex and multifactorial disease, whose diagnosis and management are still challenging. Due to its potential morbidity, it is extremely important to investigate the 5 key elements discussed in this paper in order to provide an early diagnosis and initiate the most effective treatment.

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To cite this article

L. Gentile, F. Benazzo, F. De Rosa, S. Boriani, G. Dallagiacoma, G. Franceschetti, M. Gaeta, F. Cuzzocrea
A systematic review: characteristics, complications and treatment of spondylodiscitis

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci
Year: 2019
Vol. 23 - N. 2 Suppl
Pages: 117-128
DOI: 10.26355/eurrev_201904_17481