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November 1976

Yersinia enterocolitica Septicemia With Septic Arthritis

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Michael Reese Hospital and Medical Center, Chicago, and the Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago.

Arch Intern Med. 1976;136(11):1305-1308. doi:10.1001/archinte.1976.03630110067018

We report a case of Yersinia enterocolitica septicemia with septic arthritis. Gentamicin administration controlled the septicemia but failed to eradicate the organisms in the joint, in spite of a synovial fluid level four times its minimal inhibitory concentration after four days of therapy. Development of azotemia necessitated change of antibiotic therapy to chloramphenicol, which eradicated the infection. While Y enterocolitica infection in the United States is uncommon, it must be added to the list of organisms causing suppurative arthritis and septicemia in susceptible hosts. Septic arthritis must be distinguished from the much more common reactive rheumatic polyarthritis associated with Y enterocolitica infection, for which antibiotic therapy is neither needed nor helpful.

(Arch Intern Med 136:1305-1308, 1976)

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