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JYMS : Journal of Yeungnam Medical Science

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Byoung Kuk Jang 1 Article
Diagnostic value of serum procalcitonin and C-reactive protein in discriminating between bacterial and nonbacterial colitis: a retrospective study
Jae Yong Lee, So Yeon Lee, Yoo Jin Lee, Jin Wook Lee, Jeong Seok Kim, Ju Yup Lee, Byoung Kuk Jang, Woo Jin Chung, Kwang Bum Cho, Jae Seok Hwang
J Yeungnam Med Sci. 2023;40(4):388-393.   Published online April 3, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.12701/jyms.2023.00059
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Background
Differentiating between bacterial and nonbacterial colitis remains a challenge. We aimed to evaluate the value of serum procalcitonin (PCT) and C-reactive protein (CRP) in differentiating between bacterial and nonbacterial colitis.
Methods
Adult patients with three or more episodes of watery diarrhea and colitis symptoms within 14 days of a hospital visit were eligible for this study. The patients’ stool pathogen polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing results, serum PCT levels, and serum CRP levels were analyzed retrospectively. Patients were divided into bacterial and nonbacterial colitis groups according to their PCR. The laboratory data were compared between the two groups. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) was used to evaluate diagnostic accuracy.
Results
In total, 636 patients were included; 186 in the bacterial colitis group and 450 in the nonbacterial colitis group. In the bacterial colitis group, Clostridium perfringens was the commonest pathogen (n=70), followed by Clostridium difficile toxin B (n=60). The AUC for PCT and CRP was 0.557 and 0.567, respectively, indicating poor discrimination. The sensitivity and specificity for diagnosing bacterial colitis were 54.8% and 52.6% for PCT, and 52.2% and 54.2% for CRP, respectively. Combining PCT and CRP measurements did not increase the discrimination performance (AUC, 0.522; 95% confidence interval, 0.474–0.571).
Conclusion
Neither PCT nor CRP helped discriminate bacterial colitis from nonbacterial colitis.

JYMS : Journal of Yeungnam Medical Science