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Infectious Arthritis

Clinical Overview

Infectious arthritis, otherwise known as septic arthritis, is caused by bacteria invading a joint. Bacteria may invade the joint through a wound or infection in other parts of the body. The bacteria then grows in the joint, causing pus, pain, redness, and swelling. If it is not treated quickly, it can permanently damage the cartilage in the joint.

Causes

  • Bacterial infection
  • Skin boils
  • Cellulitis
  • Bone infection
  • Puncture wounds
  • Skin abrasions
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Tuberculosis
  • Infection elsewhere in the body (such as urinary tract infection)

Risk Factors
  • Diabetes Mellulitis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Liver disease
  • Immunosuppressive drugs
  • Joint surgery
  • Injections into joints
  • Poor health
  • Illness that weakens the immune system (such as HIV)
  • Sexually transmitted infections

Last updated: Jan-01-09

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