Juxta-vertebral lesions in granulomatosis with polyangiitis

Giuseppe A. Ramirez, Emanuel Della-Torre, Corrado Campochiaro, Enrica Bozzolo, Alvise Berti, Luisa Praderio, Lorenzo Dagna, Maria Grazia Sabbadini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To describe the clinical, pathological, serological, and radiological characteristics of juxta-vertebral masses occurring in patients with granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA). Methods: We analyzed the clinical records of patients with juxta-vertebral lesions from our GPA study cohort and reviewed the English literature for other cases of GPA with juxta-vertebral localization. Results: Out of 74 patients in our GPA study cohort, six (8%) had juxta-vertebral lesions. We found 10 cases of juxta-vertebral GPA described in the English literature. Overall, juxta-vertebral lesions were detected at GPA onset in 11/16 (69%) patients, and preferentially occurred on the right side of the spine (12/15 patients, 80%). Fifteen patients (94%) with juxta-vertebral lesions had systemic GPA. Juxta-vertebral lesions were associated with back pain at GPA onset in 8/16 (50%) patients. In all of them juxta-vertebral lesions resolved or improved after treatment. Conclusions: Preference for the right-anterior side of the spine, increased 18FDG uptake on PET scan, low or absent invasiveness of the surrounding tissues, and occurrence in the context of systemic disease were the main features of juxta-vertebral GPA. Symptomatic lesions showed a better response to immunosuppressive therapies.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSeminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2016


  • Granuloma
  • Granulomatosis with polyangiitis
  • Vertebral
  • Wegener

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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