Topic Overview

Bacterial infections of the spine are rare but can include infection
of:

  • The
    discs (discitis).
  • The spinal cord (usually
    an infection of the tissue covering the spinal cord, called an epidural
    abscess).
  • One or more vertebrae (osteomyelitis).
  • The
    facet joints, which may be the site of infectious
    arthritis.

Bacteria that infect the spine usually originate in other parts of
the body and are carried to the spine through the bloodstream. But
bacteria can enter the spine directly during surgery or injection treatments,
as the result of injury, or as a result of IV drug use.

Related Information

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP – Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Adam Husney, MD – Family Medicine

Current as ofMarch 21, 2017