November 1976

Serratia marcescens-Caused Arthritis With Negative and Positive Birefringent Crystals

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, and the Veterans Administration Hospital, Albuquerque, NM. Dr Messner is now at the Bernalillo County Medical Center.

Arch Intern Med. 1976;136(11):1323-1325. doi:10.1001/archinte.1976.03630110081021

We encountered an unusual case of arthritis caused by Serratia marcescens, with both positive and negative birefringent crystals in the same inflammatory synovial fluid. This combination of events is most likely to occur in men over 40 years old who have a predisposing illness or are receiving immunosuppressive drugs. This case shows the need to consider multiple pathological processes occurring in the same joint.

(Arch Intern Med 136:1323-1325, 1976)