Sacroiliac joint tuberculosis: Classification and treatment

Nam Hyun Kim, Hwan Mo Lee, Jae Doo Yoo, Jin Suck Suh

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49 Scopus citations


The authors treated 16 patients with tuberculosis of the sacroiliac joint. Twelve were treated surgically and four were treated conservatively. The clinical symptoms were buttock and low back pain in all patients, and most had difficulty walking (68.6%) and had radicular pain in their lower limbs (50%). Of the 16 patients, four (25%) had associated tuberculous spondylitis, six (37.5%) had an abscess in the gluteal region, and two (12.5%) had an abscess in the inguinal region. The diagnosis was proven by pathologic specimen in 12 patients and by clinical symptoms, laboratory data, and radiologic findings in the remaining four patients. The authors classified tuberculous sacroiliitis into four types based on the clinical and radiologic findings. Types 1 and 2 were treated conservatively with chemotherapy alone, whereas Types 3 and 4 were treated with surgery and chemotherapy. Healing occurred and was evident in patients who had curettage and arthrodesis (Types 3 and 4) at a mean of 20.8 months, which was comparable with healing in the patients who had chemotherapy alone that occurred at a mean of 23.5 months (Types 1 and 2). The authors suggest that the new classification will be helpful in determining the therapeutic plan of tuberculous sacroiliitis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-222
Number of pages8
JournalClinical orthopaedics and related research
StatePublished - 1999


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