Acta Orthopaedica, 87:1, 60-66, DOI: 10.3109/17453674.2015.1094613

Treatment of prosthetic joint infections due to Propionibacterium

Anouk M E Jacobs, Miranda L Van Hooff, Jacques F Meis, Fidel Vos & Jon H M Goosen
Hip Knee Shoulder

Background and purpose — Currently, Propionibacterium is frequently recognized as a causative microorganism of prosthetic joint infection (PJI). We assessed treatment success at 1- and 2-year follow-up after treatment of Propionibacterium-associated PJI of the shoulder, hip, and knee. Furthermore, we attempted to determine whether postoperative treatment with rifampicin is favorable.

Patients and methods — We conducted a retrospective cohort study in which we included patients with a primary or revision joint arthroplasty of the shoulder, hip, or knee who were diagnosed with a Propionibacterium-associated PJI between November 2008 and February 2013 and who had been followed up for at least 1 year.

Results — We identified 60 patients with a Propionibacterium-associated PJI with a median duration of 21 (0.1–49) months until the occurrence of treatment failure. 39 patients received rifampicin combination therapy, with a success rate of 93% (95% CI: 83–97) after 1 year and 86% (CI: 71–93) after 2 years. The success rate was similar in patients who were treated with rifampicin and those who were not.

Interpretation — Propionibacterium-associated PJI treated with surgery in combination with long-term antibiotic administration had a successful outcome at 1- and 2-year follow-up irrespective of whether the patient was treated with rifampicin. Prospective studies are needed to determine whether the use of rifampicin is beneficial in the treatment of Propionibacterium-associated PJI.

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