Tuberculous spondylitis as a complication of intravesical bacillus Calmette-Guerin therapy

J. R. Fishman, D. T. Walton, N. M. Flynn, D. R. Benson, Ralph W deVere White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


We report a case of tuberculous spondylitis following intravesical bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) instillation. A 90-year-old male physician living in South Africa received an uncomplicated 6-week course of intravesical BCG (Japanese 172 strain) for high grade superficial bladder carcinoma. He experienced a sudden onset of debilitating lower back pain 16 months following this treatment. A lytic lesion involving the anterior T11 and T12 vertebral bodies was diagnosed and subsequently biopsied. An acid- fast organism was isolated after 3 weeks of incubation and was confirmed through deoxyribonucleic acid probe hybridization as a mycobacterium. High performance liquid chromatography analysis speciated the organism as Mycobacterium bovis BCG, proving that it was acquired through the intravesical therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)584-587
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1993


  • BCG vaccine
  • bladder neoplasms
  • tuberculosis, spinal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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