Pediatric Pneumococcal Bone and Joint Infections
Objective. To describe the clinical and microbiological characteristics of infants and children with bone and joint infections caused by penicillin-susceptible and penicillin-nonsusceptible strains of Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Design. Multicenter, prospective patient accrual; retrospective chart review of identified patients.
Setting. Eight children's hospitals in the United States.
Participants. Forty-two children with bone and/or joint infections prospectively enrolled in the United States Pediatric Multicenter Pneumococcal Surveillance Study from September 1, 1993 to August 31, 1996.
Outcome Measures. Data were collected on multiple variables, including age, gender, race, days of symptoms before and during hospitalization, antibiotic and surgical therapy, laboratory and imaging studies.
Results. Of the 42 children enrolled (21 bone, 21 joint infections), 14 had isolates that were not susceptible to penicillin. Eight of 16 (50%) strains isolated from children who received antibiotics within 4 weeks before hospitalization were not susceptible to penicillin, compared with 4 of 15 (27%) strains isolated from children without previous antibiotic exposure. Clinical response to therapy was similar between children infected by penicillin-susceptible strains compared with those infected by penicillin-nonsusceptible strains, including duration of hospitalization (9.1 days vs 11.2 days), days of intravenous antibiotic therapy (25.3 days vs 24.6 days), days of fever (3.6 days vs 3.1 days), and sequelae (14% vs 7%). The most commonly prescribed single agents for parenteral therapy in definitive treatment were ceftriaxone (36%), penicillin (15%), and clindamycin (15%). Oral therapy followed parenteral therapy in 56% of children. The mean (± standard deviation) duration of total antibiotic therapy in children with osteomyelitis was 57.5 ± 48.6 days (range, 23–196 days) and 29.2 ± 11.8 days (range, 12–67 days) for arthritis. Late sequelae (long-term destructive changes of the bone or joint) were documented in 5 (12%) children, 4 with osteomyelitis, and 1 with arthritis. Sequelae occurred in 30% of children with long bone osteomyelitis associated with infection in the adjacent joint. The age of children with sequelae was younger than those without sequelae (6.4 months vs 18.6 months).
Conclusions. The demographic characteristics and anatomic sites of infection in our patients were similar to previously published series collected from single institutions before the emergence of significant antibiotic resistance in S pneumoniae. Our analysis suggests that children infected by penicillin-nonsusceptible strains have a similar clinical response to therapy when compared with children infected by penicillin-susceptible strains.
Streptococcus pneumoniae is responsible for a small but consistent proportion (0%-4%) of all bone and joint infections in infants and children, following the more prevalent pathogens, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes, and in the pre-Haemophilus vaccine era,Haemophilus influenzae type b.1–13 Bone and joint infections are a rare manifestation of invasive disease caused by pneumococcus in children, in contrast to the organism's dominant role as a cause of bacteremia, meningitis, and respiratory tract infections.14 Previous reviews of bone and joint infections caused by this organism in children have focused retrospectively on the clinical characteristics of infection in a single institution or region throughout time. These reports appeared before the development of widespread antibiotic resistance in S pneumoniae in the United States. The Pediatric Multicenter Pneumococcal Surveillance Study Group (PMPSSG) was organized to collect current information in a prospective manner on all children with invasive pneumococcal disease seen in eight pediatric centers across the United States. During the first 3 years of surveillance by the PMPSSG, data were collected on the clinical manifestations of the infections caused by S pneumoniae, as well as the microbiological characteristics of these organisms.15–17 For this report, we examined the clinical and laboratory characteristics of 42 children with pneumococcal bone and joint infections at the PMPSSG sites during the first 3 years of prospective surveillance. This report represents the largest series of pneumococcal bone and joint infections in children.
Children with invasive pneumococcal infections were identified prospectively between September 1, 1993 and August 31, 1996 from the eight children's hospitals that comprise the PMPSSG: Texas Children's Hospital, Houston, TX; Children's Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL; Columbus Children's Hospital, Columbus, OH; Children's Hospital of San Diego, San Diego, CA; Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA; Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR; Brenner Children's Hospital, Winston-Salem, NC; and Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA. Cases were identified based on positive cultures for S pneumoniae from either blood or from other sterile body sites.
This report for osteomyelitis and septic arthritis analyzed data from children with a positive culture for S pneumoniae from a bone or joint, or those who had a positive blood culture for S pneumoniae in the context of a clinical case of osteomyelitis or septic arthritis (based on results of examination, laboratory tests, and imaging studies). Charts were reviewed retrospectively using a standardized case report form. Data collected included information on the characteristics and duration of the presenting signs and symptoms of the infection, the clinical course during hospitalization, medical and surgical therapy, laboratory and imaging studies performed, characteristics of the S pneumoniae isolate, and long-term outcome.
Antibiotic susceptibilities and serotyping were performed by the C. T. Parker Infectious Diseases Laboratory, Texas Children's Hospital. Susceptibilities were determined by microbroth dilution using Mueller-Hinton broth supplemented with 3% lysed horse blood.18 Susceptibility breakpoints were based on the National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards guidelines.19 Organisms were considered: 1) susceptible to penicillin if they demonstrated a minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) ≤0.06 μg/mL; 2) intermediate to penicillin for a MIC of 0.1 to 1.0 μg/mL; and 3) resistant to penicillin for a MIC ≥2.0 μg/mL. For ceftriaxone, organisms were considered: 1) susceptible if they demonstrated a MIC ≤0.5 μg/mL; 2) intermediate for a MIC of 1.0 μg/mL; and 3) resistant for a MIC ≥2.0 μg/mL. Organisms were considered nonsusceptible if they were either intermediate or resistant.
Strains were serotyped by the quellung reaction using commercially available antisera (Staten Seruminstitut, Daco, Inc, Carpinteria, CA).
Differences in clinical and laboratory parameters between the populations infected by penicillin-susceptible (PEN-S) strains and those infected with penicillin-nonsusceptible (PEN-NS) strains were calculated using the two-sample t test (Data Desk 4.0, Data Description, Ithaca, NY). Dichotomous variables were analyzed by χ2.
Demographics and Concurrent Illness
A total of 1255 children with invasive infections caused byS pneumoniae were identified by the PMPSSG during the 3-year data-collection period. Bone or joint infections were documented in 42 (3%) of these children. The mean (± standard deviation [SD]) age of the 42 infected children was 17.1 ± 20.6 months, with a range of 11 days to 9 years; 30 children were male. There were 15 black children, 22 white children, and 5 Hispanic children. The mean (±SD) ages of the 21 children with bone infections and the 21 children with joint infections were 12.0 ± 22.4 months and 21.5 ± 18.0 months, respectively (ns, P = .1). One child with arthritis had concurrent meningitis. Otitis media was concurrently diagnosed in 5 of the 21 (23%) children with bone infections and in 6 of the 21 (29%) children with joint infections.
With respect to underlying immune-compromising conditions, one 5-year-old boy with septic arthritis of the knee had previously undergone bone marrow transplantation for leukemia. One 13-month-old girl, also with septic arthritis of the knee, was noted to have sickle cell trait. No other children were documented to have an underlying condition that could potentially predispose to invasive pneumococcal infection.
Sites of bone infection identified were: proximal femur (n = 2), distal femur (n= 5), proximal humerus (n = 3), distal humerus (n = 2), proximal tibia (n = 2), distal tibia (n= 2), calcaneus (n = 3), ileum (n = 1), and 6th anterolateral rib (n = 1). No child had two concurrent sites of osteomyelitis. Ten of 16 children with long bone osteomyelitis had clinically evident septic arthritis of the adjacent joint. The mean age of those with associated arthritis, 7.6 months, was statistically similar to those without arthritis, 6.8 months (P = .7). The knee was the most commonly associated joint, related to osteomyelitis in the adjacent femur (3 cases) and tibia (1 case), followed by the shoulder (2 cases), the elbow (2 cases of infection in the humerus), the hip (1 case), and the ankle (1 case of infection of the tibia). One child had septic arthritis of the right hip in association with osteomyelitis of the right proximal tibia. Four of the 21 children (19%) with osteomyelitis had a history of nonpenetrating trauma to the area infected, including an 11-day-old male with osteomyelitis of the proximal humerus after birth trauma to the arm. Children with osteomyelitis had a history of decreased range of motion of the affected extremity before hospitalization for a mean of 5.1 days, and fever before hospitalization for a mean of 5.6 days (Table 1).
The site of infection for the 21 children with arthritis without concurrent osteomyelitis was: hip (n = 10), knee (n = 8), and ankle (n = 4). One child had arthritis at two sites simultaneously (right knee and left hip). Only 2 of the 21 children with septic arthritis had a recognized history of trauma to the affected joint. Before hospitalization these children had a history of 2 to 3 days of decreased range of motion of the affected joint or failure to bear weight, and a history of fever for a mean of 3.0 days (Table 1).
History of Illness
A recent illness (within 4 weeks of the documented pneumococcal infection) with either an upper respiratory tract infection or otitis media was reported in 22 of the 42 (52%) children studied. Nineteen of 21 children with bone infections and 10 of 21 children with joint infections sought medical attention for symptoms of their infection before the day of hospitalization. Thirteen of 29 sought care once, 9 sought care twice, and 7 sought care at least three times. A 10-month-old child with osteomyelitis of the distal femur visited a clinic eight times for the same complaint throughout a period of 45 days before hospitalization. Two children were initially hospitalized for fever without signs or symptoms of bone or joint infection. These children were subsequently documented to be bacteremic; 1 developed signs of a knee infection 2 days after admission to the hospital and 1 was diagnosed with osteomyelitis of the femur by radiograph after 5 days of hospitalization.
History of Previous Antibiotic Use
Antibiotic use within 4 weeks of hospitalization was reported in 16 of 32 children from whom these data were available. In 10 patients the history of previous antibiotic use was unknown. The most frequent antibiotics used before hospitalization were: amoxicillin (6 children), intramuscular ceftriaxone (4 children), cefaclor (3 children), amoxicillin-clavulanate (2 children), azithromycin (2 children), and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (2 children). Susceptibility data were available for 31 strains isolated from the 32 children from whom information was available on previous antibiotic use. Of strains cultured from those with antibiotic use, 8 of 16 (50%) had decreased susceptibility to penicillin, and 3 of 16 (19%) had decreased susceptibility to ceftriaxone. For those children without previous antibiotic therapy only 4 of 15 strains (27%) had decreased susceptibility to penicillin and 3 of 15 strains (20%) had decreased susceptibility to ceftriaxone (χ2 = 1.78,P > .1 with respect to penicillin susceptibility).
In 15 of 21 children with osteomyelitis the adjacent joint was tapped, yielding a positive Gram's stain for Gram-positive diplococci in 7 and positive cultures in 10, suggesting an associated joint infection in at least 10 of the 21 (48%). Ten children with osteomyelitis were documented to have concurrent bacteremia. Blood was the only site of pathogen isolation in 6, bone was the only site in 5, and the adjacent joint was the only site in 5 children. Of the 21 children with septic arthritis, cultures of synovial fluid were positive in 19 and blood cultures were positive in 9. The joint was the only site of isolation of S pneumoniae in 12 children; blood was the only site of isolation in 2. One child with an infected shoulder had group A streptococcus isolated in addition to S pneumoniae from cultures of the synovial fluid.
Susceptibility data were available for 41 of the 42 strains originally isolated. Nine strains isolated from children with osteomyelitis, and 5 strains isolated from children with arthritis demonstrated decreased susceptibility to penicillin. Nonsusceptibility to ceftriaxone was demonstrated in 5 strains isolated from children with osteomyelitis and in 3 strains isolated from children with arthritis (Table 2).
Isolates from 21 children with osteomyelitis and 20 children with arthritis were serotyped. From children with osteomyelitis, the most commonly identified serotypes were: type 19 (n = 6), type 6 (n = 4), type 9 (n = 4), type 23 (n = 3), and type 18 (n = 2). Serotypes most commonly identified in children with arthritis were: type 6 (n = 8), type 19 (n = 4), type 23 (n = 3), and type 14 (n = 2). The distribution of serotypes in children with osteomyelitis and adjacent arthritis reflected the overall distribution of serotypes in children with osteomyelitis, with a predominance of type 19. Serotypes of isolates with decreased susceptibility to penicillin and ceftriaxone are also noted on Table 2.
The peripheral white blood cell (WBC) count, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, and C-reactive protein concentration at the time of diagnosis in children with bone infections and joint infections are given in Table 1. Because of the retrospective nature of the data collection, serial determinations of erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein were not available for analysis on most patients.
Of children with arthritis, without associated osteomyelitis, the mean WBC count in synovial fluid was 187 500/mm3 (range, 2000–412 000) with a mean of 84% of WBCs identified as polymorphonuclear leukocytes. Similarly, in children with osteomyelitis associated with septic arthritis from whom data were available, the mean WBC count in synovial fluid was 124 000/mm3 with 83% of WBCs described as polymorphonuclear leukocytes.
Twenty of the 21 children with osteomyelitis had radiographs taken of the affected bone. In 14 of the 20, abnormalities of the bone or periosteum were demonstrated. Of these 14, 5 had radionuclide bone scans, 4 of which were interpreted as positive. Four of the remaining 6 patients with normal radiographs had positive radionuclide bone scans. In the other 2 children with normal radiographs and negative scans, the diagnosis was made by performance of a surgical procedure on the affected extremity (aspiration of the proximal femur) in 1 child and by follow-up radiographs 5 days into hospitalization, demonstrating radiolucencies of the proximal femur in the other. The single child who did not have a radiograph obtained at the time of admission had a positive radionuclide bone scan. Data were not systematically collected on the types of imaging procedures in arthritis.
Data on surgical procedures were recorded for 19 children with osteomyelitis: 12 had incision and drainage, 5 had aspiration only, and 2 had no surgical procedure performed. Data on the specific types of surgical procedures were not collected.
Incision and drainage was performed on all but 2 children with septic arthritis (1 with a hip infection and 1 with a knee infection, both treated with aspiration only). One child (left shoulder infection) required two drainage procedures. Surgical drains were placed in all children except for the two infections treated with aspiration only. The average (±SD) duration that the surgical drain was left in place was 2.1 ± 0.7 days (range, 1–3 days).
Antibiotics used most often for definitive parenteral therapy and for oral therapy are listed in Table 3. For children with bone infections, the mean number of days (±SD) of intravenous therapy was 31.6 ± 28.8 (range, 6–126 days); 13 received follow-up oral therapy for a mean of 43.1 ± 44.6 days (range, 12–147 days). The total antibiotic course for children with bone infections was 57.5 ± 48.6 days (range, 23–196 days), with a median of 38 days.
For joint infections, the duration of intravenous therapy was shorter than for osteomyelitis, with a mean of 18.9 ± 13.4 days (range, 3–67 days); 9 received oral therapy for a mean of 22.1 ± 8.9 days (range, 7–35 days). Total antibiotic therapy for joint infections (parenteral plus oral) was 29.2 ± 11.8 days (range, 12–67 days).
Clinical Course of Children Infected With PEN-S Versus PEN-NS Isolates
Of the 9 children with osteomyelitis caused by PEN-NS strains, the mean duration of intravenous therapy was 30.6 days, compared with a mean duration in the group with infection caused by PEN-S strains of 32.3 days. For the 5 children with joint infections caused by PEN-NS strains, the mean duration of intravenous therapy was only 13.8 days, compared with 20.5 days in the 16 infected by PEN-S strains. The duration of hospitalization in the 14 children with bone or joint infections caused by PEN-NS strains was 11.2 ± 10.9 days, compared with 9.1 ± 5.2 days in children with infections caused by PEN-S strains (P = .4). The mean duration of fever during hospitalization for those children infected by nonsusceptible strains was 3.1 ± 2.2 days; similar to that for children infected by susceptible strains, 3.6 ± 4.6 days (P = .66). The ages of children infected with PEN-NS strains were statistically similar to those infected with PEN-S strains (11.7 months vs 19.8 months, P = .24).
Definitive parenteral antibiotic therapy for children with osteomyelitis infected by PEN-NS strains consisted of ceftriaxone or cefotaxime (n = 4), clindamycin (n = 3), vancomycin (n = 1), or cefazolin (n = 1). Five of the 9 children with bone infections caused by PEN-NS strains received oral follow-up therapy with clindamycin (n = 2), amoxicillin (n = 1), cefaclor (n = 1), or cefprozil (n = 1). Definitive parenteral therapy in children with arthritis infected by PEN-NS strains consisted of clindamycin (n = 3) or ceftriaxone/cefotaxime (n = 2). Three of the 5 children with joint infections caused by PEN-NS strains received oral follow-up therapy, all with clindamycin.
Sequelae were documented in 4 of the 21 (19%) children with osteomyelitis and in 1 of the 21 (5%) with arthritis. In all children with long bone osteomyelitis demonstrating sequelae, organisms were cultured from the joint adjacent to the infected bone. Sequelae included a flexion contracture of the knee (distal femur), malalignment of the elbow joint (secondary to changes in the proximal radius and distal humerus), destructive changes of the distal femoral epiphysis, rib resection in 1 child with rib osteomyelitis, and avascular necrosis of the femoral head in 1 child with arthritis of the hip. Only 1 of 5 children noted to have sequelae was infected by a PEN-NS strain of pneumococcus (penicillin MIC = 2.0 μg/mL, ceftriaxone MIC = 1.0 μg/mL). The mean duration of symptoms before diagnosis, 7.7 days, was not significantly greater than for those without sequelae. Antibiotic therapy was also similar between the two groups. The mean age of those with sequelae was 6.4 months, significantly less than the age of those without sequelae, 18.5 months, P = .0078.
Bone and joint infections caused by S pneumoniae have been well-described.1–1320–26 This organism is the responsible pathogen in up to 4% of all bacterial bone infections, and up to 20% of bacterial joint infections in children. Bone and joint infections represented only 3% of all cases of invasive pneumococcal disease collected by the PMPSSG.15 This is similar to the data reported by Gray and Dillon14 and Jacobs.21 The average age of children in this report (17.6 months) is comparable to that for other pneumococcal infections reported from the PMPSSG.15 This mean age is also comparable to previously published series of osteoarticular infections that include pneumococcal bone and joint infections1,,222–24 and slightly older than the 11 months in the series reported by Jacobs.21 The specific bones and joints involved in our patient population were distributed similarly to those previously reported in the literature; the femur and humerus the most often affected bones and the knee and hip the most commonly involved joints. The frequent association of septic arthritis with osteomyelitis (50%) was also noted by Jacobs.21 The high rate of bacteremia in our patients with osteomyelitis (48%) and arthritis (43%) may represent the natural course of invasive infection with pneumococcus. However, the fact the most common site of pathogen isolation for children with osteomyelitis was the blood rather than bone, suggests the possibility of bias in case identification based on positive cultures, with overrepresentation of those children with osteomyelitis associated with bacteremia. The history of previous nonpenetrating trauma to an extremity in 20% of children with osteomyelitis is consistent with the widely held concept of inoculation of injured tissues during bacteremia in the pathogenesis of bone infections. Of interest was the fact that 10% of children in our report were hospitalized without localizing signs or symptoms of bone or joint infection, indicating that these infections should be considered in febrile children admitted to the hospital with no apparent focus.
The serotypes of pneumococcus causing infection in our patients with osteomyelitis and septic arthritis were somewhat different from those causing infection at other body sites in the PMPSSG group overall.15 Types 6 and 19, which were the second and third most prevalent strains isolated from all PSPSSG study patients, caused 57% of the cases of osteomyelitis and 64% of cases of arthritis. The most prevalent serotype of all isolates, regardless of site of isolation, in the PMPSSG group was type 14; however, none of the children with bone infection and only 2 of the 21 children with arthritis were infected by type 14 pneumococcus. The reasons for the apparent differences in serogroups of clinical isolates from bone and joint infections remain speculative.
Children and adults with underlying conditions represent up to 26% of those with invasive pneumococcal infections from other studies14,,27 and 27% of all pneumococcal infections in PMPSSG patients.15 In contrast only a single child in our series with a documented bone or joint infection had a known underlying immune-compromising condition other than age-dependent susceptibility. A poor response to polysaccharide antigens is well recognized in children <24 months of age. This immaturity leads to an increased incidence of pneumococcal infection in this age group compared with older children and adults.28 Immune deficiencies that have been specifically reported to be associated with pneumococcal bone and joint infections include: splenic dysfunction and/or humoral immune deficiencies caused by hemoglobinopathy29 and IgG subclass deficiency;30 neutrophil chemotactic deficiency;31 and cellular immune deficiency associated with bone marrow transplantation,32 as was documented in 1 of our patients. Associations have also been made between hemophilia33,,34 and prosthetic joints35 and pneumococcal septic arthritis. Radiographic changes in the bone were apparent at the time of diagnosis in 70% of children with osteomyelitis, a somewhat higher figure than the 36% reported by Jacobs.21 In all but 2 children with negative radiographs, however, a radionuclide bone scan was diagnostic.
The mean duration of treatment of osteomyelitis and arthritis were 56.0 and 29.4 days, respectively. Only 63% of children with osteomyelitis and 41% of children with septic arthritis received sequential therapy with parenteral followed by oral therapy. The remaining children were treated with parenteral therapy exclusively. These differences may reflect the retrospective nature of the data collection and varying standards of practice at the different participating centers, taking into account issues other than the medical requirements of treatment. Surgical drainage of involved joints was performed in essentially all children, with drains left in place an average of 2 days before removal.
Antibiotic therapy in the 4 weeks preceding the pneumococcal infection was associated with a greater proportion of infections caused by PEN-NS organisms; however, this association did not reach statistical significance as it did for all isolates analyzed in the PMPSSG study.15 It is, however, of great concern that 27% ofS pneumoniae isolated from children without previous antibiotic therapy demonstrated decreased susceptibility to penicillin and 20% demonstrated decreased susceptibility to ceftriaxone. This clearly documents the high rates of antibiotic resistance in S pneumoniae in communities represented by the PMPSSG.
Given the relatively small number of children infected by strains ofS pneumoniae that were PEN-NS, we are not able to draw conclusions regarding the efficacy of antibiotic or surgical therapy in these children, although no microbiological failures were documented in the 14 children with osteomyelitis or septic arthritis caused by these strains. It is possible that the microbiological success in the treatment of children in this report is a function of both the significant antibiotic activity of penicillin and ceftriaxone against strains noted to have relative resistance to these antibiotics, as well as the excellent penetration of the β-lactam antibiotics into bone and joint tissue with parenteral therapy. In combination, these two factors may result in bactericidal activity at the site of infection for at least 60% of the dosing interval, allowing for a microbiological cure.36 If β lactam resistance continues to increase in S pneumoniae, or less active antibiotics are used in treatment, microbiological and clinical cures may not be achieved.
Sequelae of osteomyelitis occurred in 1 of 9 children infected by PEN-NS strains, compared with 3 of 12 infected by PEN-S strains. Furthermore, our analysis of days of fever after the start of therapy, days of hospitalization, and sequelae in the children infected by PEN-NS strains compared with those infected by susceptible strains did not note any differences between the two groups of children. Our findings are in contrast to those reported by Abbasi et al37 in 3 children with bone and joint infections caused by PEN-NS pneumococci. It is possible that the slow clinical response of 2 of their patients was related to the very high MICs to cefotaxime (6 μg/mL and 8 μg/mL) compared with the lower MICs of infecting organisms in our patients.
Nineteen percent of children with long bone osteomyelitis demonstrated long-term sequelae. For children with involvement of the adjacent joint, the rate of sequelae was 30%. These rates are comparable to those previously summarized by Fink and Nelson6 for bone and joint infections primarily caused by Staphylococcus aureus, and to those cited by Jackson et al38 for children with arthritis adjacent to osteomyelitis. Given the retrospective nature of data collection on these children, our stated rate of sequelae may actually underestimate the true rate. These data suggest that a more aggressive approach to diagnosis is needed, as the mean number of days of osteoarticular symptoms before hospitalization was 5.1 for children with bone infections and 2.2 for those with joint infections. Of particular interest was the observation that the mean age of children with sequelae was significantly lower than the age of those without sequelae (6.4 months vs 18.6 months). This observation suggests that immunologic, anatomic, or clinical factors associated with young infancy may predispose to more destructive disease in this age group.
Pneumococcal bone and joint infections are an uncommon complication of pneumococcal bacteremia. Assuming that ∼1% to 5% of children with bacteremia caused by S pneumoniae develop meningitis,39 and that bone and joint infections were documented to occur with a frequency ∼20% of that of meningitis in the PMPSSG data set,15 bone and joint infections seem to occur in ∼1 in 100 to 1 in 500 children with pneumococcal bacteremia. Because the serotypes causing these infections are represented in many of the new conjugate pneumococcal vaccines, the incidence of pneumococcal bone and joint infection should decrease dramatically after widespread routine immunization of children.
We wish to acknowledge financial support for the PMPSSG through Roche Laboratories, and for assistance with data collection by Beverly Petrites and Joan Young (San Diego); Tracey Paris, Linda Lamberth, and Rebekah Lichenstein (Houston); Timothy Postula (Chicago); Susana Aragon (Los Angeles); Nancy C. Tucker (Little Rock); and Michele Ortenzo (Pittsburgh).
- Received March 3, 1998.
- Accepted May 7, 1998.
Reprint requests to (J.S.B.) Children's Hospital, San Diego, 3020 Children's Way, MC 5041, San Diego, CA 92123.
- PMPSSG =
- Pediatric Multicenter Pneumococcal Surveillance Study Group •
- MIC =
- minimum inhibitory concentration •
- SD =
- standard deviation •
- WBC =
- white blood cell count •
- PEN-S =
- penicillin-susceptible •
- PEN-NS =
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- Copyright © 1998 American Academy of Pediatrics