Serum procalcitonin levels in patients with primary pulmonary coccidioidomycosis

Kenneth K. Sakata, Thomas E. Grys, Yu Hui H. Chang, Holenarasipur R. Vikram, Janis E. Blair

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Rationale: The serum procalcitonin assay has emerged as a promising biomarker to distinguish between bacterial and viral respiratory tract infections but has not been used to differentiate coccidioidomycosis from bacterial infection. A correlation between procalcitonin serum levels and coccidioidomycosis has never been reported. Objective: To determine any association between serum procalcitonin levels and primary pulmonary coccidioidomycosis. Methods: We identi fi ed and enrolled 20 immunocompetent patients with symptomatic primary pulmonary coccidioidomycosis of < 8 weeks ' duration and performed a one-time procalcitonin assay, with a cutoff of < 0.25 μg/L indicating a nonbacterial infection. Measurements and Main Results: Nineteen of 20 patients (95%) had serum procalcitonin of < 0.25 μg/L. The median procalcitonin level was 0.05 μg/L (range, < 0.05-0.87 μg/L; interquartile range, 0.05-0.05 μg/L). Sixteen of 20 patients (80%) had undetectable procalcitonin of < 0.05 μg/L. The four patients with detectable procalcitonin had a median value of 0.2 μg/L (range, 0.09-0.87 μg/L). Conclusions: In this pilot study, procalcitonin was not elevated in immunocompetent patients with primary pulmonary coccidioidomycosis at a median of 32 days after symptom onset. Larger prospective studies are needed to confirm this finding.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1239-1243
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of the American Thoracic Society
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014


  • Coccidioidomycosis
  • Community-acquired pneumonia
  • Immunocompetent
  • Procalcitonin
  • Respiratory tract infections

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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