2022 SPILF – Clinical Practice guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of disco-vertebral infection in adults

These guidelines are an update of those made in 2007 at the request of the French Society of Infectious Diseases (SPILF, Société de Pathologie Infectieuse de Langue Française). They are intended for use by all healthcare professionals caring for patients with disco-vertebral infection (DVI) on spine, whether native or instrumented. They include evidence and opinion-based recommendations for the diagnosis and management of patients with DVI. ESR, PCT and scintigraphy, antibiotic therapy without microorganism identification (except for emergency situations), therapy longer than 6 weeks if the DVI is not complicated, contraindication for spinal osteosynthesis in a septic context, and prolonged dorsal decubitus are no longer to be done in DVI management. MRI study must include exploration of the entire spine with at least 2 orthogonal planes for the affected level(s). Several disco-vertebral samples must be performed if blood cultures are negative. Short, adapted treatment and directly oral antibiotherapy or early switch from intravenous to oral antibiotherapy are recommended. Consultation of a spine specialist should be requested to evaluate spinal stability. Early lifting of patients is recommended.