The usefulness of serial C-reactive protein measurement in managing neonatal infection

Acta Paediatr. 1995 Jan;84(1):10-3. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.1995.tb13475.x.


Recent advances in laboratory technology have enabled us to measure C-reactive protein with a higher sensitivity in a short period using a minimal amount of blood. Thus C-reactive protein can be measured easily several times a day. In this study, serial changes in C-reactive protein values were evaluated in 108 term and 240 preterm newborn infants with suspicion of infection, and the changing patterns of C-reactive protein values were compared with clinical outcome. For a diagnosis of infection, the negative predictive values in term and preterm infants were 99.0% and 97.8%, respectively, although the sensitivities were 61.5% and 75.0%, respectively. Antibiotic therapy was started at birth and discontinued when the changing pattern of C-reactive protein and clinical findings did not suggest infection. As a result, mean durations of administration of antibiotics in the term and preterm infants were 3 and 4 days, respectively. Recognition of the changing pattern of C-reactive protein was very useful in excluding infection and minimizing unnecessary antibiotic therapy in managing neonatal infection.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • C-Reactive Protein / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / blood
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / diagnosis
  • Infant, Premature, Diseases / prevention & control
  • Infections / blood
  • Infections / diagnosis*
  • Lasers
  • Nephelometry and Turbidimetry
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • C-Reactive Protein