The detection of musculoskeletal sepsis, especially following joint replacement, continues to be a challenging problem. Often, even with invasive diagnostic evaluation, the diagnosis of infection remains uncertain. This is a report on the first 55 Indium-Ill white blood cell (WBC) images performed in 39 patients for the evaluation of musculoskeletal sepsis. There were 40 negative and 15 positive Indium-111 WBC images. These were correlated with operative culture and tissue pathology, aspiration culture, and clinical findings. Thirty-eight images were performed for the evaluation of possible total joint sepsis (8 positive and 30 negative images); 17 for the evaluation of nonarthroplastyrelated musculoskeletal sepsis (7 positive and 10 negative images). Overall, there were 13 true-positive, 39 true-negative, two false-positive, and one false-negative images. Indium-111 WBC imaging is a sensitive and specific means of evaluating musculoskeletal sepsis, especially following total joint replacement.
From the University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California.