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Table 1 Characteristics of children with confirmed serious bacterial infection (SBI), those with no detectable bacterial infection (NBI) and controls

From: Novel biomarker combination improves the diagnosis of serious bacterial infections in Malawian children

  SBI (n = 280) NBI (n = 97) Controls (n = 15) p value
Age (years), median(IQR) 2.0 (0.6 – 6.9) 2.5 (1.0 – 5.7) 10.0 (6.0-13.0) <0.0005
Males 154 (55%) 61 (63%) 13/21 (62%) <0.0005
Duration of symptoms (days), median(IQR) 3 (2 – 5) 3 (2 – 5) NR 0.76
Previous antibiotics (%) 123 (44%) 37 (38%) NR 0.32
Meningitis (%) 235 (84%) 47 (49%) NR <0.0005
Mortality (%) 68 (24%) 15 (15%) NR 0.02
HIV-infected (%) 145 (52%) 45 (47%) 0 (0%) <0.0005
Height for age Z score < − 3 (%) 42/272 (15%) 16/91 (18%) ND 0.63
Weight for height Z score < − 3 (%) 37/218 (17%) 11/82 (13%) ND 0.45
White cell count (WCC) x10 9 /l median(IQR) 12.6 (7.8 – 20.0) 13.8 (10.0 – 20.4) ND 0.09
Neutrophil count x10 9 /l median(IQR) 10.6 (4.6 – 16.3) 8.9 (5.5 – 15.5) ND 0.78
  1. Numeric values are median and interquartile range (IQR). (ND = not done, NR = not relevant in a healthy control). Statistical comparison is between three groups, SBI, NBI and controls, using the Kruskal = Wallis test.