Prognostic role of serum procalcitonin measurement in adult patients admitted to the emergency department with fever

Marcello Covino, Alberto Manno, Giuseppe De Matteis, Eleonora Taddei, Luigi Carbone, Andrea Piccioni, Benedetta Simeoni, Massimo Fantoni, Francesco Franceschi, Rita Murri

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


Background and Objectives. Fever is one of the most common presenting complaints in the Emergency Department (ED). This study aimed at evaluating the prognostic role of serum Procalcitonin (PCT) measurement among adult patients admitted to the ED with fever. Materials and Methods. This is a retrospective cross-sectional study including all consecutive patients admitted to ED with fever and subsequently hospitalized in a period of six-year (January 2014 to December 2019). Inclusion criteria were age > 18 years, fever (T ≥ 38◦C) or chills within 24 h from presentation to the ED as the main symptom, and availability of a PCT determination obtained <24 h since ED access. The primary endpoint was overall in-hospital mortality. Results. Overall, 6595 patients were included in the study cohort (3734 males, 55.6%), with a median age of 71 [58–81] years. Among these, based on clinical findings and quick sequential organ failure assessment (qSOFA), 422 were considered septic (36.2% deceased), and 6173 patients non-septic (16.2% deceased). After correction for baseline covariates, a PCT > 0.5 ng/mL was an independent risk factor for all-cause in-hospital death in both groups (HR 1.77 [1.27–2.48], and 1.80 [1.59–2.59], respectively). Conclusions. Among adult patients admitted with fever, the PCT assessment in ED could have reduced prognostic power for patients with a high suspicion of sepsis. On the other hand, it could be useful for sepsis rule-out for patients at low risk. In these latter patients, the prognostic role of PCT is higher for those with a final diagnosis of bloodstream infection.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)788-795
Numero di pagine8
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2021


  • Antibiotic treatment
  • Fever
  • Procalcitonin
  • Sepsis


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