Background Several case series have reported on clinical and radiographic characteristics of patients with vertebral osteomyelitis (VO) caused by non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM). However, only a few patients were included, and systematic reviews are still lacking. The aim of this study was to update and summarise the pre-disposing conditions, clinical and radiographic characteristics of such cases due to NTM. Methods In this study, a systematic review was conducted of the English-language literature from 1961–2014 to investigate the pre-disposing conditions and characteristics of cases of VO due to NTM. Also, six additional cases diagnosed in the study hospitals were described; these cases are included in an analysis of a total of 69 cases of NTM VO. Results The most common species, regardless of the presence of HIV co-infection, was M. avium Complex followed by M. xenopi. Ten cases with HIV infection had a median CD4 lymphocyte count of 320/mm3 (range = 41–465/mm3) at the time of diagnosis of NTM VO. The VO in the cases with HIV infections occurred at an earlier age and more often involved the thoracic spine than in the cases without HIV infection. Pre-disposing trauma or surgery was reported in 14.5% (10/69) of the cases. A variety of immunosuppressive diseases were observed in 49.3% of the patients, including the 10 with HIV infections and corticosteroids were used in 27.5% of the cases. Surgery was performed in 67.6% and improvement was reported in 80.6%. Conclusion NTM should be considered in immunocompromised patients with indolent VO without confirmation of tuberculosis.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was approved by the Institutional Review Board committees of each hospital (Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Chonnam National Universtity hospital)
© 2016 Society for Scandinavian Journal of Infectious Diseases.
- Immunocompromised host
- Mycobacterium avium complex
- Non-tuberculous mycobacteria