Pathogens in Pediatric Septic Arthritis: A Multi-Center Study in Turkiye (PEDSART Study)

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Iseri Nepesov M., KILIÇ Ö., Sali E., Yesil E., Akar A., Kaman A., ...More

Children, vol.11, no.1, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/children11010134
  • Journal Name: Children
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, CINAHL, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: children, polymerase chain reaction, septic arthritis
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Objectives: Septic arthritis (SA) is a serious bacterial infection that must be treated efficiently and timely. The large number of culture-negative cases makes local epidemiological data important. Accordingly, this study aimed to evaluate the etiology, clinical characteristics, and therapeutic approach of SA in children in Turkiye, emphasizing the role of real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) techniques in the diagnosis. Methods: In this multi-center, prospective study, children hospitalized due to SA between February 2018 and July 2020 in 23 hospitals in 14 cities in Turkiye were included. Clinical, demographic, laboratory, and radiological findings were assessed, and real-time PCR was performed using synovial fluid samples. Results: Seventy-five children aged between 3 and 204 months diagnosed with acute SA were enrolled. Joint pain was the main complaint at admission, and the most commonly involved joints were the knees in 58 patients (77.4%). The combination of synovial fluid culture and real-time PCR detected causative bacteria in 33 patients (44%). In 14 (18.7%) patients, the etiological agent was demonstrated using only PCR. The most commonly isolated etiologic agent was Staphylococcus aureus, which was detected in 22 (29.3%) patients, while Streptococcus pyogenes was found in 4 (5.3%) patients and Kingella kingae in 3 (4%) patients. Streptococcus pyogenes and Kingella kingae were detected using only PCR. Most patients (81.3%) received combination therapy with multiple agents, and the most commonly used combination was glycopeptides plus third-generation cephalosporin. Conclusions: Staphylococcus aureus is the main pathogen in pediatric SA, and with the use of advanced diagnostic approaches, such as real-time PCR, the chance of diagnosis increases, especially in cases due to Kingella kingae and Streptococcus pyogenes.