Q. What other tests can be prescribed by your doctor in case the results of Procalcitonin Test are not normal?
If the results of Procalcitonin Test are not normal, the doctor may prescribe other tests such as C-Reactive Protein Test, Bacterial Culture Test, Complete Blood Count (CBC) Test, Lactate Test or Comprehensive Metabolic Panel Test.
Q. What are the common symptoms of sepsis?
The most common clinical symptoms that may indicate a large-scale systemic bacterial infection or sepsis include fever with shivering or chills, clammy (slimy to touch) and sweaty skin, extreme discomfort or pain in any part of the body or the entire body, rapid breathing, increased heartbeat, confusion, dizziness and reduced frequency of urination.
Q. What conditions other than bacterial infection can cause increased procalcitonin levels in the body?
Apart from a bacterial infection, certain other conditions can also mildly to moderately elevate the procalcitonin levels in the blood. These conditions include tissue injury due to trauma, surgery; large-scale burns, inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis), heart attacks, rejection of organ transplant, advanced urinary tract infection in children involving the kidneys and viral diseases like pneumonia.
Q. Who are at risk of developing sepsis?
Sepsis is a large-scale systemic bacterial infection that has spread to the whole body. People who are at risk of developing sepsis include newborns and infants, the elderly, patients after surgery, people with medical devices such as catheters, patients suffering from Diabetes, patients with weakened or compromised immune systems due to conditions like AIDS or otherwise healthy individuals with an untreated bacterial infection.
Q. How is the blood sample taken?
The healthcare provider takes a blood sample from the arm. The site from where the blood is to be withdrawn is cleaned with a swab of rubbing alcohol. This is then followed by inserting a small needle which has a tube attached to it for collecting blood. Once the sufficient blood for analysis is withdrawn, the needle is removed. The site is then covered with a gauze pad.
Q. Is there any risk associated with the withdrawal of blood sample procedure?
As such there is no risk but in few cases, bruising, bleeding, and infection at the puncture site can be seen. In very few cases, there can be swelling of the vein after the blood is withdrawn.