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BMC Infect Dis. 2011 May 3;11:112. doi: 10.1186/1471-2334-11-112.

Enhancement of CURB65 score with proadrenomedullin (CURB65-A) for outcome prediction in lower respiratory tract infections: derivation of a clinical algorithm.

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Medical University Department of the University of Basel, Kantonsspital Aarau, Switzerland.



Proadrenomedullin (ProADM) confers additional prognostic information to established clinical risk scores in lower respiratory tract infections (LRTI). We aimed to derive a practical algorithm combining the CURB65 score with ProADM-levels in patients with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) and non-CAP-LRTI.


We used data of 1359 patients with LRTI enrolled in a multicenter study. We chose two ProADM cut-off values by assessing the association between ProADM levels and the risk of adverse events and mortality. A composite score (CURB65-A) was created combining CURB65 classes with ProADM cut-offs to further risk-stratify patients.


CURB65 and ProADM predicted both adverse events and mortality similarly well in CAP and non-CAP-LRTI. The combined CURB65-A risk score provided better prediction of death and adverse events than the CURB65 score in the entire cohort and in CAP and non-CAP-LRTI patients. Within each CURB65 class, higher ProADM-levels were associated with an increased risk of adverse events and mortality. Overall, risk of adverse events (3.9%) and mortality (0.65%) was low for patients with CURB65 score 0-1 and ProADM ≤0.75 nmol/l (CURB65-A risk class I); intermediate (8.6% and 2.6%, respectively) for patients with CURB65 score of 2 and ProADM ≤1.5 nmol/l or CURB classes 0-1 and ProADM levels between 0.75-1.5 nmol/L (CURB65-A risk class II), and high (21.6% and 9.8%, respectively) for all other patients (CURB65-A risk class III). If outpatient treatment was recommended for CURB65-A risk class I and short hospitalization for CURB65-A risk class II, 17.9% and 40.8% of 1217 hospitalized patients could have received ambulatory treatment or a short hospitalization, respectively.


The new CURB65-A risk score combining CURB65 risk classes with ProADM cut-off values accurately predicts adverse events and mortality in patients with CAP and non-CAP-LRTI. Additional prospective cohort or intervention studies need to validate this score and demonstrate its safety and efficacy for the management of patients with LRTI.


Procalcitonin-guided antibiotic therapy and hospitalisation in patients with lower respiratory tract infections: the prohosp study; Identifier: ISRCTN: ISRCTN95122877.

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