Diagnosis of Postpartum Infections : clinical Criteria are Better than Laboratory Parameter

D.B. Partlow, S.P. Chauhan, L. Justice, Pat Magann, R.W. Martin, J.C. Morrison

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)


    BACKGROUND: Physiologic increases in the leukocyte count and segmental neutrophil percentage during pregnancy alter the ability of these indices to predict infection. METHODS: Women with cesarean deliveries were assessed by leukocyte counts and segmented neutrophil percentage as well as clinical signs to detect postoperative infection. RESULTS: In 157 consecutive patients undergoing cesarean deliveries there was a significant physiologic increase between the preoperative and postoperative leukocyte count (12.4 +/- 3.9/uL vs. 14.8 +/- 3.4/uL, P <0.001). The leukocyte count after delivery did not discriminate whether or not the patient would develop a postpartum infection or have significant hyperpyrexia. CONCLUSION: Due to physiologic changes associated with pregnancy, the leukocyte count and segmented neutrophil percentage do not predict infection. Therefore clinical findings are most important in diagnosing postpartum infections.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)67-70
    JournalJournal of Mississippi State Medical Association
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2004


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