CASE REPORTS
JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Culture-negative prosthetic joint arthritis related to Coxiella burnetii.

BACKGROUND: The number of hip and knee arthroplasty procedures is steadily increasing as life expectancy increases. Coxiella burnetii may be responsible for culture-negative prosthetic joint arthritis and is associated with antibiotic failure and repeated surgeries. We report the first case series of C. burnetii-related culture-negative prosthetic joint arthritis.

METHODS: Cases were retrieved from the French National Referral center for Q fever. Diagnosis was based on (18)fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography, serology, broad-range polymerase chain reaction, and C. burnetii-specific polymerase chain reaction.

RESULTS: Four cases of C. burnetii-related culture-negative prosthetic joint arthritis were found. Standard bacteriologic procedures would have missed the diagnosis in all cases. Etiologic diagnosis improved the outcome in all but 1 case.

CONCLUSIONS: A systematic, comprehensive diagnostic strategy should be used in culture-negative prosthetic joint arthritis, including testing for C. burnetii in endemic areas.

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