Background and Aims One the main causes of perinatal mortality is infection. PCT measurement is regularly performed in our clinical practice. Along with the clinical condition, PCT level is an important factor in the decision of therapeutical interventions. Depending on the condition, immunoglobulin and pentoxifylline administration is considered. We wanted to examine, how much our therapeutical decisions were influenced by the PCT levels measured.
Methods We analyzed retrospectively the data of the neonates admitted in 2011 to our tertiary Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. PCT was measured routinely at the age of 16–32 hours.
Results Depending on the severity of the clinical condition and the PCT levels empiric antibiotic treatment (1st group; 34.5±4.6 gestational weeks, 2435±892 g; n=29), antibiotic therapy plus pentoxifylline (2nd group; 35.7±3.8 gestational weeks, 2515±858g; n=27) and antibiotics plus intravenous immunoglobulin with or without pentoxifylline (3rd group; 33.6±3.5 weeks; 2211±851g; n=26) were given. There was no significant difference between the groups, regarding the gestational ages and birthweights. There was a significant difference among the three groups, regarding the PCT levels at the age of 18–32 hours: (8.7±4.2; 23.3±18.4 and 34.3±219 ng/ml). There was a notable decrease of the PCT levels in every group.
Conclusions Although the dynamics of PCT show a pronounced difference, compared to the later life, with an adequate evaluation along with the clinical status it is an important tool in the diagnostics of perinatal infections. Its analysis together with the application of the immunomodulant pentoxifylline therapy may decrease the use of immunoglobulins.