The C reactive protein (CRP) is one of the most accurate inflammatory markers in acute appendicitis (AA). Obesity leads to a pro-inflammatory state with increased CRP, which may interfere with the interpretation of this laboratory test in AA.
To assess sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), and negative predictive value (NPV) of CRP in patients with AA and their correlation to body mass index (BMI) and body fat composition.
This is a retrospective study based on clinical records and imaging studies of 191 subjects with histopathologically confirmed AA compared to 249 controls who underwent abdominal computed tomography (CT). Clinical and epidemiological data, BMI, and CRP values were extracted from medical records. CT scans were assessed for AA findings and body composition measurements.
CRP values increased according to patients’ BMI, with varying sensitivity from 79.78% in subjects with normal or lean BMI, 87.87% in overweight, and 93.5% in individuals with obesity. A similar pattern was observed for NPV: an increase with increasing BMI, 69.3% in individuals with normal or lean BMI, 84.3% in overweight, and 91.3% in individuals with obesity. There was a positive correlation between CRP and visceral fat area in patients with AA.
Variations exist for sensitivity, specificity, PPV, and NPV values of CRP in patients with AA, stratified by BMI. An increase in visceral fat area is associated with elevated CRP across the BMI spectrum.
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