Anaerobic prosthetic joint infection

Neel B. Shah, Aaron J. Tande, Robin Patel, Elie F. Berbari

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


In an effort to improve mobility and alleviate pain from degenerative and connective tissue joint disease, an increasing number of individuals are undergoing prosthetic joint replacement in the United States. Joint replacement is a highly effective intervention, resulting in improved quality of life and increased independence [1]. By 2030, it is predicted that approximately 4 million total hip and knee arthroplasties will be performed yearly in the United States [2].One of the major complications associated with this procedure is prosthetic joint infection (PJI), occurring at a rate of 1-2% [3-7]. In 2011, the Musculoskeletal Infectious Society created a unifying definition for prosthetic joint infection [8]. The following year, the Infectious Disease Society of America published practice guidelines that focused on the diagnosis and management of PJI. These guidelines focused on the management of commonly encountered organisms associated with PJI, including staphylococci, streptococci and select aerobic Gram-negative bacteria. However, with the exception of Propionibacterium acnes, management of other anaerobic organisms was not addressed in these guidelines [1].Although making up approximately 3-6% of PJI [9,10], anaerobic microorganisms cause devastating complications, and similar to the more common organisms associated with PJI, these bacteria also result in significant morbidity, poor outcomes and increased health-care costs. Data on diagnosis and management of anaerobic PJI is mostly derived from case reports, along with a few cohort studies [3]. There is a paucity of published data outlining factors associated with risks, diagnosis and management of anaerobic PJI. We therefore reviewed available literature on anaerobic PJI by systematically searching the PubMed database, and collected data from secondary searches to determine information on pathogenesis, demographic data, clinical features, diagnosis and management. We focused our search on five commonly encountered anaerobic organisms associated with PJI. Since anaerobic PJI has also been linked to dental procedures, we also reviewed information on the use of dental procedures and prophylaxis, when available.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Anaerobe
  • Infection
  • Prosthetic joint

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Infectious Diseases


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