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Journal of Perinatal Medicine

Official Journal of the World Association of Perinatal Medicine

Editor-in-Chief: Dudenhausen, Joachim W.

Editorial Board Member: / Bancalari, Eduardo / Milner, Anne / Genc, Mehmet R. / Chervenak, Frank A. / Chappelle, Joseph / Bergmann, Renate L. / Bernardes, J.F. / Bevilacqua, G. / Blickstein, Isaac / Cabero Roura, Luis / Carbonell-Estrany, Xavier / Carrera, Jose M. / D`Addario, Vincenzo / D'Alton, MD, Mary E. / Dimitrou, G. / Grunebaum, Amos / Hentschel, Roland / Köpcke, W. / Kawabata, Ichiro / Keirse, Marc J.N.C. / Kurjak M.D., Asim / Lee, Ben H. / Levene, Malcolm / Lockwood, Charles J. / Marsal, Karel / Makatsariya, Alexander / Nishida, Hiroshi / Papp, Zoltán / Pejaver, Ranjan Kumar / Pooh, Ritsuko K. / Romero, Roberto / Saugstad, Ola D. / Schenker, Joseph G. / Sen, Cihat / Seri, Istvan / Vetter, Klaus / Winn, Hung N. / Young, Bruce K. / Zimmermann, Roland

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In This Section
Volume 38, Issue 5 (Sep 2010)


Diagnostic value of interleukin-6 and C-reactive protein on early onset bacterial infection in preterm neonates with respiratory distress

Maria Aparecida C. Rego
  • Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil
/ Francisco Eulógio Martinez
  • Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil
/ Jorge Elias Jr
  • Department of Radiology, Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil
/ Marisa Márcia Mussi-Pinhata
  • Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil
Published Online: 2010-05-05 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jpm.2010.071


Aims: To evaluate the C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) as diagnostic tools for early onset infection in preterm infants with early respiratory distress (RD).

Methods: CRP and IL-6 were quantified at identification of RD and 24 h after in 186 newborns. Effects of maternal hypertension, mode of delivery, Apgar score, birth weight, gestational age, mechanical ventilation, being small for gestational age (SGA), and the presence of infection were analyzed.

Results: Forty-four infants were classified as infected, 42 as possibly infected, and 100 as uninfected. Serum levels of IL-6 (0 h), CRP (0 h), and CRP (24 h), but not IL-6 (24 h) were significantly higher in infected infants compared to the remaining groups. The best test for identification of infection was the combination of IL-6 (0 h) 36 pg/dL and/or CRP (24 h) 0.6 mg/dL, which yielded 93% sensitivity and 37% specificity. The presence of infection and vaginal delivery independently increased IL-6 (0 h), CRP (0 h) and CRP (24 h) levels. Being SGA also increased the CRP (24 h) levels. IL-6 (24 h) was independently increased by mechanical ventilation.

Conclusions: The combination of IL-6 (0 h) and/or CRP (24 h) is helpful for excluding early onset infection in preterm infants with RD but the poor specificity limits its potential benefit as a diagnostic tool.

Keywords: C-reactive protein; cytokine; early onset neonatal sepsis; interleukin-6; neonatal respiratory distress syndrome; neonatal sepsis; preterm infant

About the article

Corresponding author: Dr. Marisa Márcia Mussi-Pinhata Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto University of São Paulo Av Bandeirantes 3900 Ribeirão Preto 14049900 Brazil

Received: 2009-09-09

Revised: 2010-02-03

Accepted: 2010-02-05

Published Online: 2010-05-05

Published Online: 2010-05-05

Published in Print: 2010-09-01

Citation Information: Journal of Perinatal Medicine, ISSN (Online) 1619-3997, ISSN (Print) 0300-5577, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jpm.2010.071. Export Citation

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