Septic Arthritis: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 5/9/2020

Septic arthritis is the infection of a joint space.

Signs and symptoms of septic arthritis include

Other associated symptoms and signs can include

Cause of septic arthritis

Infection with bacteria, fungi, or viruses causes septic arthritis. Risk factors for the development of septic arthritis include

  • taking immune-suppression medicines,
  • intravenous drug abuse,
  • a history of joint disease, injury or surgery, and
  • a number of underlying medical illnesses.

Medical conditions that put a person at increased risk for septic arthritis include

Staphylococcus aureus and Hemophilus influenzae are the most common bacterial causes of septic arthritis.

Other septic arthritis symptoms and signs


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Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.