Active septic arthritis of the hip in adults: what's new in the treatment? A systematic review

EFORT Open Rev. 2021 Mar 1;6(3):164-172. doi: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.200082. eCollection 2021 Mar.


Treatment of bacterial septic arthritis in the native adult hip joint can be challenging. Prompt diagnosis and treatment decisions can reduce the associated morbidity and mortality.For this systematic review of the literature, we asked: (1) What are the treatment options? (2) What are the success rates and the outcomes after treatment? (3) Which antibiotic and duration of therapy are optimal?We searched the electronic databases PubMed, Scopus, and Embase using the search terms "hip" or "native hip" and "septic arthritis" or "coxitis". Studies were included if they reported on: (1) bacterial infection of the hip, (2) treatment, (3) success rate/outcomes, (4) follow-up. The final review included 19 studies. The quality of study reporting was evaluated with the Methodological Index for Non-randomized Studies (MINORS) questionnaire.Three treatment options are: arthroscopy, single open surgery, and two-stage total hip arthroplasty (THA). A high success rate in infection eradication was reported for all three. Intravenous antibiotic therapy should be promptly initiated to eradicate septic arthritis and minimize potential sequelae and complications.Arthroscopy, single open or two-stage THA were reported to be effective in treating bacterial septic arthritis of the native hip. The key to optimal outcome is early diagnosis and timely treatment. Cite this article: EFORT Open Rev 2021;6:164-172. DOI: 10.1302/2058-5241.6.200082.

Keywords: hip arthritis; septic arthritis; treatment.

Publication types

  • Review