Bone Pathology Database

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2nd image
Detailed view of lumbar region
Third image
The patient was neurologically intact. ESR was 45 mm/ hr. The Straight X rays show narrowing of the disc space between L2 and L3. There is no osteopaenia present or soft tissue shadows.

The fact that only the disc space is narrowed and that adjacent vertebrae are involved suggests an infection. Tuberculosis ( Common in South Africa) causes a soft tissue swelling and , at an early stage there is almost always an osteopaenic response in the vertebra. The patient was experiencing acute pain. Pain in Tuberculosis is usually not as severe. This suggests that the cause of the vertebral spondylitis is bacterial and not tuberculous.

Record 111