Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) infection

  • Most common organism in shoulder arthroscopy infection
  • May require at least 7 days to culture. (Athwal GS, JSES 2007;16:306).
  • Gram-positive, microaerophilic, nonspore-forming bacillus that is predominant in the pilosebaceous follicles that are most prevalent in the head, neck, and thorax.
  • Not a common in infections of the knee and lower extremity.



  • Noud PH, Esch J. Complications of arthroscopic shoulder surgery. Sports Med Arthrosc. 2013 Jun;21(2):89-96.  
  • Moen TC, Rudolph GH, Caswell K, Espinoza C, Burkhead WZ Jr, Krishnan SG.Complications of shoulder arthroscopy. J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2014 Jul;22(7):410-9.