Abstract

Background
To characterise the longitudinal dynamics of C-reactive protein (CRP) and Procalcitonin (PCT) in a cohort of hospitalised patients with COVID-19 and support antimicrobial decision-making.

Methods
Longitudinal CRP and PCT concentrations and trajectories of 237 hospitalised patients with COVID-19 were modelled. The dataset comprised of 2,021 data points for CRP and 284 points for PCT. Pairwise comparisons were performed between: (i) those with or without significant bacterial growth from cultures, and (ii) those who survived or died in hospital.

Results
CRP concentrations were higher over time in COVID-19 patients with positive microbiology (day 9: 236 vs 123 mg/L, p < 0.0001) and in those who died (day 8: 226 vs 152 mg/L, p < 0.0001) but only after day 7 of COVID-related symptom onset. Failure for CRP to reduce in the first week of hospital admission was associated with significantly higher odds of death. PCT concentrations were higher in patients with COVID-19 and positive microbiology or in those who died, although these differences were not statistically significant.

Conclusions
Both the absolute CRP concentration and the trajectory during the first week of hospital admission are important factors predicting microbiology culture positivity and outcome in patients hospitalised with COVID-19. Further work is needed to describe the role of PCT for co-infection. Understanding relationships of these biomarkers can support development of risk models and inform optimal antimicrobial strategies.

Rights

This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

Cite as

Ming, D., Myall, A., Hernandez, B., Weisse, A., Peach, R., Barahona, M., Rawson, T. & Holmes, A. 2021, 'Informing antimicrobial management in the context of COVID-19: Understanding the longitudinal dynamics of C-reactive protein and procalcitonin', BMC Infectious Diseases, 21, article no: 932. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06621-7

Downloadable citations

Download HTML citationHTML Download BIB citationBIB Download RIS citationRIS
Last updated: 16 June 2022
Was this page helpful?