Vertebral osteomyelitis due to Candida species: Case report and literature review

D. J. Miller, G. C. Mejicano

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133 Scopus citations


Candida species uncommonly cause vertebral osteomyelitis. We present a case of lumbar vertebral osteomyelitis caused by Candida albicans and review 59 cases of candidal vertebral osteomyelitis reported in the literature. The mean age was 50 years, and the lower thoracic or lumbar spine was involved in 95% of patients. Eighty-three percent of patients had back pain for >1 month, 32% presented with fever, and 19% had neurological deficits. The erythrocyte sedimentation rate was elevated in 87% of patients, and blood culture yielded Candida species for 51%. C. albicans was responsible for 62% of cases, Candida tropicalis for 19%, and Candida glabrata for 14%. Risk factors for candidal vertebral osteomyelitis were the presence of a central venous catheter, antibiotic use, immunosuppression, and injection drug use. Medical and surgical therapies were both used, and amphotericin B was the primary antifungal agent. Prognosis was good, with an overall clinical cure rate of 85%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)523-530
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 15 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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