Use of procalcitonin for early prediction of lethal outcome of postoperative sepsis

Alexander Novotny, Klaus Emmanuel, Edouard Matevossian, Monika Kriner, Kurt Ulm, Holger Bartels, Bernhard Holzmann, Heike Weighardt, Jörg Rüdiger Siewert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Background: To develop strategies for the prediction of sepsis outcome systemic procalcitonin (PCT) levels were correlated with various clinical parameters. Methods: PCT levels and Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE) II scores were assessed on the day of sepsis diagnosis in a large series (n = 160) of patients developing sepsis after major visceral surgery. Results: In multivariate analysis, systemic PCT and the APACHE II score could be identified as independent early predictive indicators of lethal sepsis. Combining both indicators at sepsis onset, a prognosis score could be calculated using binary logistic regression analysis allowing the identification of high- and low-risk groups. While 71% of the high-risk patients died of sepsis, 77% of patients assigned to the low-risk group survived the septic complication (sensitivity 71%, specificity 77%). Conclusion: Calculation of the prognosis-score allowed for an early prediction of the septic course with high sensitivity and specificity. This information could aid in deciding on adequate treatment strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-39
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Peritonitis
  • Procalcitonin
  • Prognosis
  • Risk evaluation
  • Sepsis


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