Interleukin-6: A Sensitive Parameter for the Early Detection of Neonatal Sepsis


  • M Khaled Noor Associate Prof. Neonatology, BSMMU
  • M Shahidullah Professor, Neonatology, BSMMU
  • Hamidur Rahman Professor of Paediatrics, BSMMU
  • Mahbub Mutanabbi Assistant Professor Peadiatrics, BSMMU, Dhaka



Interleukin-6, Neonatal Sepsis


Background: Neonatal sepsis is a major cause of neonatal mortality and morbidity throughout the world. Though blood culture is the gold standard and has higher sensitivity and specificity over the hematological value and cytokine, it is not available in our community health situation and also in most of health care facilities. It is also time consuming. Therefore hematological value and interleukin-6 can be evaluated for the early diagnosis of neonatal bacterial infection.

Objective: This study was conducted to see the usefulness of IL-6 as an early marker of neonatal sepsis and also to compare the sensitivity in comparison with CRP, hematological value and blood culture.

Study Design: It was a quasy experimental study.

Setting: This study was carried out in the neonatal unit of pediatric department, BSMMU during the period of September, 2005 to February, 2006.

Method: Forty five suspected septic cases were enrolled in the study and thirty healthy newborn were taken for comparison. Venous blood sample from peripheral vein was collected on the 1st day of symptoms and/or 1st day of admission and was sent for IL-6 estimation within half an hour and estimation of IL-6 was done by using immunolyte DPC USA which employed automated chemiluminescent immunoassays.

Results: Out of forty five cases of suspected-neonatal sepsis, IL-6 were positive in twenty five cases. In culture proven sepsis 100% cases had raised IL-6. In control group only five babies had raised IL-6. Three cases were culture positive, of which all were also positive for IL-6 (100%). Among the cases twenty six were CRP positive, of which twenty were also positive for IL-6 (76.92%).

Conclusion: In the present study IL-6 was found to be an early marker of neonatal infection. Sensitivity was more than CRP and other hematological parameter in the first twenty four hours.

Key words: Interleukin-6, Neonatal Sepsis.

DOI: 10.3329/bsmmuj.v1i1.3687

BSMMU J 2008; 1(1): 1-5


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How to Cite

Noor, M. K., Shahidullah, M., Rahman, H., & Mutanabbi, M. (2009). Interleukin-6: A Sensitive Parameter for the Early Detection of Neonatal Sepsis. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Journal, 1(1), 1–5.



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