The Diagnostic Value of Serum C-Reactive Protein for Identifying Pneumonia in Hospitalized Patients with Acute Respiratory Symptoms
Ruiz González, Agustín
Utrillo Montagut, Laia
Falguera i Sacrest, Miquel
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Background. The clinical diagnosis of pneumonia is sometimes difficult since chest radiographs are often indeterminate. In this study, we aimed to assess whether serum C-reactive protein (CRP) could assist in identifying patients with pneumonia. Methods. For one winter, all consecutive patients with acute respiratory symptoms admitted to the emergency ward of a single center were prospectively enrolled. In addition to chest radiographs, basic laboratory tests, and microbiology, serum levels of CRP were measured at entry. Results. A total of 923 (62.3%) of 1473 patients hospitalized for acute respiratory symptoms were included. Subjects with a final diagnosis of pneumonia had higher serum CRP levels (median 187 mg/L) than those with exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (63 mg/L) or acute bronchitis (54 mg/L, 𝑝� < 0.01). CRP was accurate in identifying pneumonia (area under the curve 0.84, 95% CI 0.82–0.87). The multilevel likelihood ratio (LR) for intervals of CRP provided useful information on the posttest probability of having pneumonia. CRP intervals above 200 mg/L were associated with LR+ > 5, for which pneumonia is likely, whereas CRP intervals below 75 mg/L were associated with LR < 0.2, for which pneumonia is unlikely. Conclusion. Serum CRP may be a useful addition for diagnosing pneumonia in hospitalized patients with acute respiratory symptoms.
Is part ofJournal of Biomarkers, 2016, vol. 2016, ID. 2198745
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