3 years ago

Application of white blood cell SPECT/CT to predict remission after a 6 or 12 week course of antibiotic treatment for diabetic foot osteomyelitis

Myriam Moret, Julien Dubreuil, Isabelle Morelec, Paul Michon, Julien Vouillarmet



Diabetic foot osteomyelitis is a major risk factor for amputation. Medical treatment allows remission in 53–82% of cases. However, the optimal duration of antibiotic therapy remains controversial as a validated marker of osteomyelitis remission is lacking. The aim of this cohort study was to assess prospectively the remission rate of diabetic foot osteomyelitis medically treated using white blood cell (WBC)-single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)/computed tomography (CT) as a predictive marker of remission.


Individuals with diabetic foot osteomyelitis that was non-surgically treated between April 2014 and December 2015 were included. All participants were treated with antibiotics alone. WBC-SPECT/CT was performed at 6 weeks and antibiotic treatment discontinued if the clinical signs of soft-tissue infection had resolved and there was no abnormal uptake of labelled WBCs. Treatment was otherwise continued for a total of 12 weeks and then discontinued. For these individuals, another WBC-SPECT/CT was performed at 12 weeks. Remission was defined as the absence of recurrence of osteomyelitis at the same location at 1 year.


Forty-five individuals were included; overall remission rate was 84% at 1 year. A 6 week course of antibiotics was used in 23 participants, 22 of whom were in remission at 1 year (96%); a 12 week course was used for 22 participants, 16 of whom were in remission at 1 year (73%). Sensitivity of WBC-SPECT/CT at 12 weeks was 100%, specificity 56%, positive predictive value 46% and negative predictive value 100%.


The study suggests that WBC-SPECT/CT could predict remission at the end of antibiotic treatment.

Trial registration:

ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02927678

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00125-017-4417-x

DOI: 10.1007/s00125-017-4417-x

You might also like
Never Miss Important Research

Researcher is an app designed by academics, for academics. Create a personalised feed in two minutes.
Choose from over 15,000 academics journals covering ten research areas then let Researcher deliver you papers tailored to your interests each day.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.