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Acta Paediatr. 2005 Dec;94(12):1855-8.

Faecal calprotectin in children with chronic gastrointestinal symptoms.

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Southampton General Hospital, Southampton, United Kingdom.



Faecal calprotectin, a neutrophil cytosolic protein, is raised in inflammatory bowel disease. We assessed this investigation in evaluating children with chronic intestinal symptoms.


Stool samples from 100 children aged 5-17 years (referrals to the regional paediatric gastroenterology service) were tested using a commercially available kit.


Calprotectin was higher in inflammatory bowel disease than normal children (p<0.0001) or in those with functional constipation (p<0.0001). The overall specificity for organic bowel disorders was 85%. Calprotectin correlated with C-reactive protein in inflammatory bowel disease (p=0.001), and clinical disease activity in ulcerative colitis (p=0.017), but not with disease activity in Crohn's disease.


Raised faecal calprotectin should prompt further assessment in children with chronic intestinal symptoms, since an organic bowel disorder is likely. However, calprotectin cannot be regarded as a specific test for idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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