Reassessment of faecal α-1-antitrypsin excretion for use as screening test for intestinal protein loss

E. M.M. Quigley, I. N. Ross, M. R. Haeney, I. B. Holbrook, M. N. Marsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Faecal α-1-antitrypsin and 51Cr-albumin losses in 42 patients with either gastrointestinal or hepatic disease were compared. The reference range was derived from measurements in 20 controls without gastrointestinal disease. Alpha-1-antitrypsin excretion was increased in patients with excessive 51Cr-albumin loss, and correlations were found between α-1-antitrypsin clearance and 51Cr-albumin excretion. Because of the considerable overlap of faecal α-1-antitrypsin excretion between controls and patients, sensitivity and specificity of the test were only 58% and 80%, respectively. This poor reliability could not be explained by sampling error or temporal variations in α-1-antitrypsin excretion. These results show that although faecal α-1-antitrypsin excretion correlates with 51Cr-albumin excretion when whole groups of patients are studied, its poor sensitivity makes it an unreliable measure of enteric protein loss.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-66
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Pathology
Volume40
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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