Vertebral Osteomyelitis and Spinal Epidural Abscess: An Evidence-based Review

Barrett S. Boody*, Tyler J. Jenkins, Joseph Maslak, Wellington K Hsu, Alpesh A Patel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

17 Scopus citations


Spinal infections have historically been associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Current treatment protocols have improved patient outcomes through prompt and accurate infection identification, medical treatment, and surgical interventions. Medical and surgical management, however, remains controversial because of a paucity of high-level evidence to guide decision making. Despite this, an awareness of presenting symptoms, pertinent risk factors, and common imaging findings are critical for treating spine infections. The purpose of this article is to review the recent literature and present the latest evidence-based recommendations for the most commonly encountered primary spinal infections: vertebral osteomyelitis and epidural abscess.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E316-E327
JournalJournal of Spinal Disorders and Techniques
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 14 2015


  • spinal epidural abscess
  • spinal infections
  • spondylodiscitis
  • vertebral osteomyelitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology

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