What tests and exams did you have that led to a diagnosis of septic arthritis?
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How is septic arthritis diagnosed?
Septic arthritis is diagnosed by identifying infected joint fluid. Joint
fluid can easily be removed sterilely in the office, clinic, or hospital with a
needle and syringe. The fluid is analyzed in a laboratory to determine if there
is an elevated number of white blood cells to suggest inflammation. A culture of
the joint fluid can identify the particular microbe and determine its
susceptibility to a variety of antibiotics.
X-ray studies of the joint can be helpful to detect injury of bone adjacent
to the joint. MRI scanning is very sensitive in evaluating joint destruction.
Blood tests are frequently used to detect and monitor inflammation. These tests
include the white blood cell count, sedimentation rate, and C-reactive protein.