[Osteoarticular infections caused by Streptococcus agalactiae. Report of 4 cases].Enferm Infecc Microbiol Clin. 1995 Feb; 13(2):99-103.EI
Streptococcus agalactiae (group B streptococcus) is a rare etiology of osteoarticular infection in adults. In a literature review (Medline-Embase plus) up until may 1994, we have found only 51 cases. In most patients, diabetes mellitus, liver disease or long-term steroid therapy were documented.
Four adult patients with osteoarticular infection due to S. agalactiae from two Galician hospitals were studied from January 1988 to October 1994: prepatellar bursitis (one case), septic monoarthritis (2 cases) and psoas abscess associated to cervical spondylodiscitis and oligoarthritis (left sternoclavicular and left hip joints).
In the first patient, a young woman with prepatellar bursitis, a previous local trauma was recorded. The second case, a man with septic arthritis of right knee, had degenerative disease of the knees and a prostatic adenocarcinoma. In the third patient, a diabetic woman with septic arthritis of the left shoulder, vulvovaginitis due to Candida albicans was found. The last patient suffered vertebral osteomyelitis of the cervical spine (C3-C4), arthritis of the left sternoclavicular and hip joints and abscess of the ipsilateral psoas. The evolution was favourable in the four cases.
Although uncommon, osteomyelitis and arthritis caused by group B streptococcus should be considered as opportunistic pathogen in adults with debilitating conditions. Early recognition and prompt institution of adequate therapy can help avoid joint destruction and severe complications.