Combining procalcitonin with the qSOFA and sepsis mortality prediction

Hua Yu, Lu Nie, Aibo Liu, Kuihai Wu, Yenh Chen Hsein, Debra W. Yen, Meng Tse G. Lee, Chien Chang Lee, Mehmet Bakir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


To investigate whether procalcitonin (PCT) can improve the performance of quick sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) score in predicting sepsis mortality, we conducted a retrospective multicenter cohort study with independent validation in a prospectively collected cohort in 3 tertiary medical centers. Patients with presumed sepsis were included. Serum PCT levels were measured at admission. Quick SOFA score and systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) criteria were calculated for each patient. PCT levels were assigned into 0, 1, and 2 points for a serum level of <0.25, 0.25 to 2, and >2ng/mL, and added to the quick sepsis-related organ failure assessment (qSOFA) score. The incremental value of PCT to qSOFA was then evaluated by logistic regression, receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve, and reclassification analysis.In all, 1318 patients with presumed severe infection were enrolled with a 30-day mortality of 13.5%. Serum level of PCT showed a high correlation with qSOFA score and 30-day inhospital mortality. The area under the ROC curve was 0.56 for SIRS criteria, 0.67 for qSOFA score, and 0.73 for qSOFA-PCT in predicting 30-day mortality. The risk prediction improvement was reflected by a net reclassification improvement of 35% (17%-52%). Incorporation of PCT into the qSOFA model could raise the sensitivity to 86.5% (95% confidence interval 80.6%-91.2%). In the validation cohort, qSOFA-PCT greatly improved the sensitivity to 90.9%.A simple modification of qSOFA score by adding the ordinal scale of PCT value to qSOFA could greatly improve the suboptimal sensitivity problem of qSOFA and may serve as a quick screening tool for early identification of sepsis.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere15981
JournalMedicine (United States)
Issue number23
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019


  • procalcitonin
  • qSOFA
  • quick SOFA score
  • sepsis


Dive into the research topics of 'Combining procalcitonin with the qSOFA and sepsis mortality prediction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this