The Indian Journal of Pediatrics

, Volume 55, Issue 6, pp 947–953

Rapid diagnostic tests in neonatal septicemia


  • Anita Chandna
    • Department of PediatricsGandhi Medical College
  • M. Nagaraj Rao
    • Department of PediatricsGandhi Medical College
  • M. Srinivas
    • Department of PediatricsGandhi Medical College
  • S. Shyamala
    • Department of PediatricsGandhi Medical College
Symposium: Neonatal Infections

DOI: 10.1007/BF02727835

Cite this article as:
Chandna, A., Rao, M.N., Srinivas, M. et al. Indian J Pediatr (1988) 55: 947. doi:10.1007/BF02727835


Fifty clinically suspected cases of septicemia and 10 healthy neonates (controls) were studied. 58% of the cases were males and 52% were less than a week old. Blood culture was positive in 48% of cases among which Gramnegative bacilli predominated (71% of culture positive cases). C-reactive protein (CRP) test, total leukocyte count, ratio of band cells to total polymorphonuclear cells, buffy coat smear examination for organisms, and gastric aspirate cytology for polymorph % were the rapid diagnostic tests performed. Our study revealed that CRP is the most useful single test with a high degree of sensitivity (83%), specificity (42%) and positive predictive accuracy (57%). The best combination of tests was CRP and gastric aspirate cytology with a sensitivity of 83%, specificity of 76% and positive predictive accuracy of 48%. These tests can be performed rapidly and do not require special laboratory equipment. These could help to differentiate infected neonates from non-infected ones, thereby reducing mortality and preventing antibiotic misuse.

Key words

Neonatal septicemia CRP and Gastric aspirate cytology

Copyright information

© Dr. K C Chaudhuri Foundation 1988