Jorge A. González-Chapa, Department of Immunology, School of Medicine and Hospital University, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, México Víctor M. Peña-Martínez, Orthopedics and Traumatology Service, Hospital University, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, México José F. Vilchez-Cavazos, Orthopedics and Traumatology Service, Hospital University, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, México Nils Haustedt, Clinic of Septic Bone and Soft-Tissue Surgery, Schön Klinik Hamburg Eilbek, Germany Adrián G. Rosas-Taraco, Department of Immunology, School of Medicine and Hospital University, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, México


Septic arthritis is considered the fastest joint destructive disease and a medical emergency. The most common etiological agents are bacteria; Staphylococcus aureus is the main cause of infection. The etiological agent and the host immune response might determine the clinical presentation and the evolution of the disease. Depending on these factors, septic arthritis might be responsible for many complications, including even death. Understanding the immunopathogenesis responsible for the clinical presentation and creating awareness of its importance may help in the medical education, research approaches, and attention of physicians treating this disease. Evidence indicates that bacteria-specific factors such as adhesins, amino acids, toxins, and superantigens are responsible for joint colonization. However, a dual role with a “double-edged sword effect” of the immune system might be responsible for septic arthritis’s severe consequences. Due to immune system redundancy, there might not be a specific component responsible for the disastrous complications. However, cells as neutrophils, macrophages, T helper cells, and their cytokines might be playing an important role. Physical complications have been well studied. However, little research has been done regarding the possible psychological effects on these patients due to the morbidities, which clearly affect the outcome of the patients. This report aims to review the available literature on joint infections focusing on the most common etiological agents, the immune response, and the impact this disease can create in the patients.



Keywords: Septic arthritis. Pathogenesis. Joint destruction. Immune response. Morbidities.