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A 78-year-old man who was undergoing hemodialysis therapy was admitted to our hospital because of sore throat, remittent cervical lymphadenopathy, and polyarthritis over the preceding 4 weeks. On admission, he had bilateral cervical lymphadenopathy. He complained of arthralgia associated with tenderness, warmth and swelling of both elbows, left side wrist and left shoulder joint. The C-reactive protein level on admission was 15.3 mg/dl. Rheumatoid factor, antinuclear antibodies, tuberculin skin test and blood culture were negative. Joint fluid was not aspirated. Radiographs of the joints did not reveal any abnormalities. Acid-fast bacilli were demonstrated in the smear of the cervical lymph node with a fluorochrome rhodamine-auramine stain. Mycobacterium tuberculosis DNA was identified by polymerase chain reaction. We found the presence of caseating granuloma on the biopsy specimens and M.tuberculosis was detected from culture. At that point, we diagnosed this patient as having tuberculous lymphadenitis. His general symptoms resolved rapidly after starting with a three-drug regimen consisting of isoniazid, rifampin and pyrazinamide. His polyarthritis also improved dramatically. Finally we considered that his polyarthritis was tuberculous rheumatism, also called Poncet's disease. Poncet's disease is characterized by sterile polyarthritis during active tuberculosis infection. It is considered a reactive arthritis, which is a different entity from tuberculous arthritis. Although this is a rare disease, we should be aware of it in hemodialysis patient clinics, because the incidence of tuberculosis infection has been reported to be increasing in patients with end-stage renal failure.


Yusuke Miki, Yoshiro Fujita, Ryosuke Kawai, Atsushi Danbara, Yukio Ueno, Yasuhiko Ito. A case of Poncet's disease (tuberculous rheumatism) in a patient with chronic renal failure undergoing hemodialysis therapy]. Ryƫmachi. [Rheumatism]. 2003 Oct;43(4):678-82

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PMID: 14598662

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