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Lumbosacral spondylodiscitis complicated by sepsis, osteomyelitis, epidural abscess formation and deep vein thrombosis
  1. Etienne Ceci Bonello,
  2. Christian Vassallo and
  3. Paul John Cassar
  1. Rheumatology, Mater Dei Hospital, L-Imsida, Malta
  1. Correspondence to Dr Etienne Ceci Bonello; etienne.ceci{at}


A 71-year-old man presented with a 3-month history of low back pain radiating to his right hip and thigh associated with lower limb weakness and constitutional symptoms. Imaging confirmed a lumbosacral spondylodiscitis at L2–3 and L5–S1 as well as a right-side psoas abscess which was treated with urgent CT-guided drainage and intravenous antibiotics. His admission was complicated by a number of issues, including the development of osteomyelitis with vertebral body destruction at multiple sites, epidural abscess formation and deep vein thrombosis. Additionally, the patient developed severe sepsis which necessitated admission to the intensive care unit. The patient’s clinical condition improved gradually with intravenous antibiotics until he was well enough for transfer to a rehabilitation centre, where he underwent regular occupational and physical therapy. Repeat imaging showed overall resolution of the aforementioned pathologies and is currently being followed up by the spinal surgeons on an outpatient basis.

  • bone and joint infections
  • radiology
  • interventional radiology

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  • Contributors ECB: manuscript preparation, manuscript editing, imaging preparation, imaging editing. CV: manuscript editing, discussion, imaging preparation. PJC: manuscript revision and gurantor of case integrity.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.