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Inicio Medicina Clínica (English Edition) The importance of calprotectin for differentiating organic inflammatory disease ...
Journal Information
Vol. 151. Issue 6.
Pages 231-235 (September 2018)
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Vol. 151. Issue 6.
Pages 231-235 (September 2018)
Original article
The importance of calprotectin for differentiating organic inflammatory disease and avoiding unnecessary procedures in paediatrics
Importancia de la calprotectina para la diferenciación de la enfermedad inflamatoria orgánica y la evitación de procedimientos innecesarios en pediatría
Ruth García Romero
Corresponding author

Corresponding author.
, Marta López Ubeda, Lidia Cardiel Valiente, Ignacio Ros Arnal
Department of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Miguel Servet University Hospital, Paseo Isabel La Católica, 1-3, 50009, Zaragoza, Spain
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Figures (2)
Tables (3)
Table 1. Reasons for presenting to the specialist for the total number of paediatric patients.
Table 2. Final diagnosis and groups for the total number of paediatric patients.
Table 3. Demographic and clinical characteristics of paediatric patients according to the final diagnosis.
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Background and objective

The objective of the study was to determine the ability of faecal calprotectin to differentiate functional and organic intestinal diseases in paediatric patients, and to evaluate the correlation between inflammatory parameters and levels of faecal calprotectin.

Patients and methods

This retrospective study involved clinical data from 129 paediatric patients with symptoms of intestinal pathology. Faecal calprotectin was determined by quantitative immunoassay. Patients were classified into three groups: functional (32.8% of patients); organic non-inflammatory bowel disease (IBD, 53.9%); and organic IBD (13.3%).


Calprotectin levels were significantly different among the three groups; between patients with IBD and the others, and also between patients with non-organic IBD and functional. Positive associations were found between high levels of calprotectin and higher erythrocyte sedimentation rate (rho=0.497), C-reactive protein (rho=0.460), and platelet count (rho=0.232). Nevertheless, an inverse correlation was found between high levels of calprotectin and transferrin saturation (rho=∧0.310), albumin (rho=∧0.412), and haemoglobin levels (rho=∧0.309).


Determination of faecal calprotectin is a complementary tool in clinical practice for discriminating between functional and organic IBD, avoiding, according to the levels of calprotectin, unnecessary invasive procedures in paediatric patients.

Inflammatory bowel disease
Antecedentes y objetivo

El objetivo de este estudio fue determinar la capacidad de la calprotectina fecal para diferenciar las enfermedades funcionales y orgánicas en los pacientes pediátricos, y evaluar la correlación entre los parámetros inflamatorios y los niveles de calprotectina fecal.

Pacientes y mèc)todos

Este estudio retrospectivo incluyó los datos clínicos de 129 pacientes pediátricos con síntomas de enfermedad intestinal. Se determinaron los valores de calprotectina fecal mediante inmunoensayo cuantitativo. Se clasificaron los pacientes en 3 grupos: funcionales (32,8% de pacientes), enfermedad intestinal inflamatoria no orgánica (EII, 53,9%) e EII orgánica (13,3%).


Los niveles de calprotectina fueron significativamente diferentes entre los 3 grupos; entre los pacientes con EII y el resto, y tambièc)n entre los pacientes con EII no orgánica e EII funcional. Se encontraron asociaciones positivas entre los niveles altos de calprotectina y la tasa de sedimentación eritrocítica alta (Rho=0,497), proteína C reactiva (Rho=0,460) y recuento plaquetario (Rho=0,232). Sin embargo, se encontró una correlación inversa entre los niveles altos de calprotectina y la saturación de transferrina (Rho=∧0,310), albúmina (Rho=∧0,412) y niveles de hemoglobina (Rho=∧0,309).


La determinación de la calprotectina fecal es una herramienta complementara en la práctica clínica para discriminar entre EII funcional y EII orgánica, y evitar con arreglo a los niveles de calprotectina, los procedimientos invasivos innecesarios en pacientes pediátricos.

Palabras clave:
Enfermedad inflamatoria intestinal


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