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Clin Infect Dis. 2003 Feb 1;36(3):286-92. Epub 2003 Jan 15.

Evaluation of the immunochromatographic Binax NOW assay for detection of Streptococcus pneumoniae urinary antigen in a prospective study of community-acquired pneumonia in Spain.

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Infectious Diseases Unit, Internal Medicine Department, Hospital General Universitario de Elche, Alicante, Spain.


We evaluated the Binax NOW rapid immunochromatographic membrane test (ICT) for detection of Streptococcus pneumoniae urinary antigen in a population-based prospective study of adults with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP). ICT was performed with urine samples obtained from 452 (91.7%) of 493 patients enrolled. Pneumococcal antigen was detected in 19 (70.4%) of 27 patients with pneumococcal pneumonia. The test results were more frequently positive for patients who had not received antibiotics before testing (26.6% vs. 12.1%; P=.002). Only 16 (10.3%) of 156 samples obtained from patients with nonpneumococcal pneumonia yielded a positive result. Of the 269 patients who had pneumonia with no pathogen identified, antigen was detected in 69 (25.7%). With conventional microbiological criteria used as the "gold standard," the test had a sensitivity of 70.4% and a specificity of 89.7%. Testing concentrated urine samples with the ICT may be a useful technique for rapid diagnosis of pneumococcal pneumonia in adults with CAP.

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