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Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery

Validation of new shoulder periprosthetic joint infection criteria

Published:April 22, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jse.2021.04.009

      Background

      A periprosthetic joint infection (PJI) in the shoulder can be difficult to diagnose. Many variables have been used to determine a PJI. Recently, the 2018 International Consensus Meeting (ICM) on orthopedic infections gave new criteria to help identify PJI in the shoulder. With the new criteria (major and minor), the PJI definition can be categorized into definite, probable, possible, and unlikely. This study was conducted to assess the new criteria for a series of consecutive first stage revision shoulder arthroplasty cases.

      Methods

      All patients undergoing a first stage revision shoulder arthroplasty using a prosthesis made of antibiotic-loaded acrylic cement (PROSTALAC) spacer from 2016 through 2019 were evaluated retrospectively. All cases were performed by a single surgeon. Each case was reviewed using the 2018 shoulder ICM diagnostic criteria. Secondary factors evaluated were type of organism identified, accuracy of minor criteria, and frozen vs. permanent section accuracy.

      Results

      A total of 87 first-stage revision arthroplasty cases were reviewed. Based on the 2018 ICM criteria, there were 20 definite (30.0%), 19 probable (21.8%), 6 possible (6.9%), and 42 unlikely (48.3%) infections. Cutibacterium acnes was the most common infectious organism overall (77.3% of culture positive cases) and was present in 39.1% of cases overall. Ten patients (25.6%) grew multiple organisms. Thirty-one patients (35.6%) had a loose humeral stem, with 23 of those patients (74.2%) having a definite or probable infection (odds ratio [OR] 7.2, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.67-19.37, P = .0001). Eleven patients (91.7%) with an elevated intraoperative synovial neutrophil cell count had a definite or probable infection. Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and C-reactive protein (CRP) was elevated in patients with a definite or probable infection (OR 9.4, 95% CI 2.47-35.62, P = .0010, and OR 7.7, 95% CI 2.29-25.56, P = .0009), respectively. Discordant results between frozen and permanent sections were found in 4 patients (4.6%).

      Conclusion

      The 2018 ICM shoulder infection criteria gave a new scoring system to diagnose PJI. C acnes was the most common infectious organism identified. Patients who had a loose humeral stem, elevated ESR, or elevated CRP were more likely to have either a definite or probable PJI. Frozen sections were able to accurately identify definite infections. Unexpected wound drainage and positive preoperative cultures were low-yield criteria in this series. More research into determining periprosthetic shoulder infection is needed to help identify which patients are more likely to have an infection.

      Level of evidence

      Keywords

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