Can imaging modalities be used as follow-up criteria after brucellar sacroiliitis treatment?
Introduction: This study aimed to identify a follow-up modality that can be used to evaluate therapeutic responses in patients receiving treatment for brucellar sacroillitis and to determine whether antibiotherapy can be stopped.
Methodology: A total of 32 patients with sacroiliac joint involvement demonstrated via magnetic resonance imaging or bone scintigraphy were followed up and treated. Patients received 200 mg/day of doxycycline and 600–900 mg/day of rifampicin for 3–21 months, and 1 g/day of streptomycin for 21 days.
Results: The mean age of the 32 patients involved was 21.81 ± 4.09. In total, 10/32 patients did not complete therapy, and the remaining 22 patients received combination antibiotic treatment for a mean of 8.95 ± 4.34 months. Of the 22 patients, 15 underwent MRI, and 7 of them did not consent to MRI. Similarly, 17 patients were followed up by bone scintigraphy, and 5 patients did not have scintigraphy results. In 9/17 patients followed up with bone scintigraphy, sacroiliitis findings were found to reduce after a mean of 7.44 ± 3.71 months, whereas in 12/15 patients on whom MRI was performed, there were no active sacroiliitis findings for a mean of 6.95 ± 2.83 months.
Conclusions: While active involvement findings in bone scintigraphy were observed for a longer period in scintigraphy images, active sacroiliitis findings disappeared in a relatively shorter period of time with MRI. Therefore, we have demonstrated that high-resolution MRI is a very sensitive technique compared to scintigraphy.
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