Septic Arthritis Symptoms

Severe pain within a joint, a swollen and/or hot joint, and decreased movement in the affected joint are common signs and symptoms of septic arthritis. Infants are most likely to develop septic arthritis in the hip; children and adults are most likely to develop it in the knee. Other symptoms may include fever, cold sweats, and chills.

An Introduction to the Signs and Symptoms of Septic Arthritis

Septic arthritis is a general term used to describe forms of arthritis caused by a bacterial infection. It can affect people of any age, but is more common in infants and children under the age of three.
The symptoms of septic arthritis (along with their severity) can vary, depending on a number of factors, including:
  • The age of the person
  • The joint or joints involved
  • The type of bacteria
  • Other conditions a person may have.
For example, infants may not have any localized joint pain, and may have fever and irritability instead. Other people may have mild symptoms that can delay diagnosis for several months. This is more common in people with a history of knee replacement or hip replacement.

Specific Septic Arthritis Symptoms

Specific symptoms of this condition may include:
  • Severe pain within a joint. For septic arthritis in the hip, pain may be felt in the buttock, thigh, or knee.
  • Swollen and/or hot joint.
  • Decreased movement of the joint.
  • A noticeable limp.
  • Other common symptoms consistent with a bacterial infection, such as fever, cold sweats, chills, extreme tiredness, and lack of appetite. In infants, irritability may be a septic arthritis symptom.
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Bacterial Arthritis

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