Last updated on January 2020

Risk Factors & Outcomes for Clinically Documented Infections in Pediatric Cancer Patients With Fever & Neutropenia

Brief description of study

The aim of the study is to identify clinical and laboratory parameters, present at the time of initial evaluation that could help predict which children with cancer, fever, and neutropenia will be at risk for developing clinically documented infections and/ or complications.

Detailed Study Description


It has long been recognized that not all neutropenic patients have the same risk of developing serious infections and/or complications.

Fever and infection represent the most important complications of myeloablative cytotoxic therapy that results in severe mucositis and prolonged neutropenia .

One of the most important concepts in the approach to infections in the febrile neutropenic patient is the recognition of risk. Risk can be defined in two ways. First, risk may be defined in terms of the probability for developing a febrile neutropenic infection; and second, it may be defined in terms of the likelihood for significantly poor outcomes due to that infection.

An understanding of the risks in the latter case may be used to define the approaches to management; for instance, in-patient versus out-patient treatment strategies and administration of intravenous versus oral formulations of antimicrobial therapy. These considerations have significant economic and quality of life ramifications.

Many institutions have developed simple clinical criteria to identify low-risk patients without having to calculate a risk-index score. This might be a more practical method in busy clinical settings, or as a tool in setting of low resource country.

Patients & Methods:

The study will include children, either referred from the pediatric oncology clinic, or who have been previously admitted to the pediatric oncology department, those who have been documented with episodes of fever and neutropenia at South Egypt Cancer Institute (SECI), and fulfilling all criteria for enrollment in this study.

All the patients at the time of initial evaluation will be subjected to complete clinical history and full clinical examination.

The enrolled patients will be followed for either developing clinically evident infection e.g., pneumonia, gastroenteritis, meningitis, septicemia, etc.), or until resolution of fever and/ or neutropenia. The risk for either developing clinically evident infection, or not, will be assessed according to clinical and laboratory parameters, present at the time of initial evaluation to identify those patients who would be more prone to develop infection and/ or complications Fever is defined as a temperature greater than or equal to 38.3 C occurring once or a temperature greater than or equal to 38 C occurring twice during a 24-hour period.

Patients with an absolute neutrophilic count (ANC) of less than 500/mm3 and those with an ANC of less than 1,000/mm3 and decreasing will be considered neutropenic.

Complete blood count & other diagnostic studies, including laboratory studies and imaging procedures will be obtained if needed to further evaluate and determine the source of fever and/or infection.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT02536599

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