Year : 2016  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 88-89

Polymerase chain reaction for diagnosis of isolated tuberculosis of the wrist joint

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Trauma Centre, BHU, Varanasi, India

Correspondence Address:
Jyoti Prakash
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Trauma Centre, BHU, Varanasi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2468-5674.183009

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A 43-year-old female patient complained of pain, morning stiffness and mild swelling in the right wrist joint for 6 months. She had no history of any constitutional symptom, weight loss or involvement of other joints, but had suffered from pulmonary tuberculosis for 10 years and had completed a full course of directly-observed treatment short course. Nonresponsive management of inflammatory arthritis dragged us to use a highly sensitive test for tuberculosis, that is, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and PCR findings from this patient were positive. This experience led us to conclude that even though conventional stain for acid fast bacilli comes to be negative, a more sensitive and specific test is needed for better diagnosis at earlier stages of the disease. However, PCR availability and cost is an issue of concern. Also a successful complete course of anti-tubercular therapy never gives the guarantee that there is no recurrence and no possibility of extra pulmonary tuberculosis, though the incidence of osteoarticular tuberculosis is relatively low.

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