What Is the Procalcitonin Test and Why Is it Important?

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Sepsis is a serious systemic bacterial infection that can take over your whole body. The risk of significant suffering and death from sepsis is extremely high. Accordingly, it is important that a person presenting at a Kentucky hospital with symptoms of sepsis be accurately and quickly diagnosed so that appropriate treatment can be provided.

The Procalcitonin Test (PCT) Is an Important Tool in Diagnosing Sepsis

According to the Mayo Clinic, the PCT is useful for diagnosing systemic infections, including sepsis, in anyone over the age of 72 hours. It may also be useful in determining the effectiveness of antibiotic treatment for significant infections.

If you, or a loved one, may be suffering from a serious bacterial infection then it is important to know:

What PCT Measures

The PCT measures the level of procalcitonin (ProCT) in the body. When a person experiences a severe systemic infection, ProCT is secreted in large quantities by many bodily tissues. An increase in ProCT levels is usually detectable two to four hours after a person contracts an infection and may peak between twelve and twenty-four hours after the triggering event.

What PCT Results Mean

Higher ProCT levels detected in the bloodstream mean a more significant infection is present. Current guidelines are as follows:

  • A ProCT level of 0.15 ng/mL or less means that a significant bacterial infection is unlikely.
  • A ProCT level of 0.15 ng/mL – 2.0 ng/mL means that a bacterial infection is possible.
  • A ProCT level that is higher than 2.0 ng/mL means that a serious bacterial infection is probable.

It is also important to know what to do if a sepsis infection is not properly diagnosed and you are hurt or your loved one is killed as a result.

Get the Help You Need

If a sepsis infection developed because of hospital negligence or if a sepsis infection was not appropriately diagnosed and treated, then you may have the right to make a legal recovery. Please contact us directly via this website to find out more about your legal rights and subscribe to our monthly newsletter for more important information to help keep you and your loved ones safe.

Related Links:

Sepsis: A Serious Risk for Kentucky Nursing Home Patients

UTI and Respiratory Infections Lead to Sepsis in Kentucky Hospitals