Reactive Arthritis

Reactive Arthritis is a topic covered in the Washington Manual of Medical Therapeutics.

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General Principles

  • Reactive arthritis refers to the inflammatory arthritis that occasionally follows certain GI or genitourinary infections. The triad of arthritis, conjunctivitis, and urethritis was formerly referred to as Reiter syndrome.
  • Chlamydia trachomatis is the most commonly implicated genitourinary infection. Shigella flexneri, Salmonella spp., Yersinia enterocolitica, or Campylobacter jejuni are the most commonly implicated GI infections. Clostridium difficile can also trigger the arthritis.
  • Of patients, 50%–80% are HLA-B27 positive. Males and females are equally affected after GI infections, although males more commonly develop the above classic triad after a Chlamydia infection.

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