Aarhus Universitets segl

Theis Muncholm Thillemann

Labeled white blood cell/bone marrow single-photon emission computed tomography with computed tomography fails in diagnosing chronic periprosthetic shoulder joint infection

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Background: Shoulder periprosthetic joint infections (PJI) caused by low-virulent bacteria pose a diagnostic challenge. Combined labeled leukocyte (WBC) and technetium 99m sulfur colloid bone marrow imaging (WBC/BM) is considered the radionuclide imaging gold standard for diagnosing lower limb PJI. However, it is laborious and expensive to perform, and documentation on shoulder arthroplasties is lacking. This study investigated WBC/BM single-photon emission computed tomography-computed tomography diagnostic performance in shoulder PJI.

Method: All patients with a failed arthroplasty referred to a highly specialized shoulder department were scheduled for a diagnostic program including a WBC/BM. If an arthroplasty was revised, biopsy specimens were obtained and cultured for 14 days. The diagnostic performance of WBC/BM imaging was determined using biopsy specimens as a reference.

Results: Of the 49 patients who underwent a WBC/BM scan, 29 (59%) were revised. Infection was present in 11 patients, in whom 2 WBC/BM scans were true positive. The WBC/BM scan in 9 patients was false negative. The remaining 18 patients all had a true negative WBC/BM scan. WBC/BM showed a sensitivity 0.18 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.00-0.41) and specificity 1.00 (95% CI, 1.00-1.00) in detecting shoulder PJI. The positive predictive value was 1.00 (95% CI, 1.00-1.00), and negative predictive value was 0.67 (95% CI, 0.49-0.84). No patients infected with Cutibacterium (formerly Propionibacterium) acnes resulted in a positive WBC/BM, nor had they preoperative or perioperative signs of infection.

Conclusion: A positive WBC/BM was found only in patients with obvious PJI. Hence, the scan added nothing to the preoperative diagnosis. The WBC/BM single-photon emission computed tomography-computed tomography scan cannot be recommended as a screening procedure when evaluating failed shoulder arthroplasties for possible infection. (C) 2018 Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery Board of Trustees. All rights reserved.

TidsskriftJournal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery
Sider (fra-til)1040-1048
Antal sider9
StatusUdgivet - jun. 2019

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