Diagnostic utility of haematological parameters and C-reactive protein in early detection of neonatal septicaemia in developing countries

Authors : Rakshatha Nayak, Subhan Ali R, Nisha T.G

DOI : 10.18231/2394-6792.2018.0020

Volume : 5

Issue : 1

Year : 0

Page No : 112-117

Introduction: Septicaemia is one of the major causes of mortality and morbidity during the neonatal period especially in developing countries. Early diagnosis of neonatal sepsis is a diagnostic problem due to non-specific clinical features. Blood culture is the gold standard, but it takes several days and is expensive. Hence there is a critical need for laboratory tests that aid in the rapid diagnosis of neonatal sepsis.
Aims and Objectives: To measure the role of Haematological Scoring System and C-reactive protein as an early diagnostic tool for neonatal sepsis.
Materials and Methods: This was a prospective study performed on 116 neonates, who were clinically suspected cases of septicaemia, admitted at Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Yenepoya Hospital, Mangalore. Each hematologic parameter like total leukocyte count, polymorphonuclear neutrophil (PMN) count, immature PMN count, platelet count etc. were analysed in all cases using the Haematological Scoring System (HSS) formulated by Rodwell et al. Blood cultures were performed as a gold standard. C-reactive protein (CRP) was also estimated.
Results: Out of 116 neonates, 61(52%) were male neonates and 55(48%) were female neonates. 18(15%) cases were with proven sepsis, 58(50%) cases with probable sepsis and 40(35%) cases were on the safer side. The HSS was found to have a sensitivity of 94.4%, specificity of 75.5%, positive predictive value was 41.4% and negative predictive value was 98.6%.
Conclusions: HSS is a rapid, simple and easily affordable screening tool for early detection of neonatal septicaemia. It also provides an effective guideline to make decisions regarding judicious use of antibiotics. 

Keywords: Blood culture, Haematological Scoring System, Neonates, Septicaemia, Rapid diagnosis

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