There is still an ongoing discussion on the prognostic value of cystatin C in assessment of kidney function. Accordingly, the present study aimed to conduct a meta-analysis to provide evidence for the prognostic value of this biomarker for acute kidney injury (AKI) in children.
An extensive search was performed in electronic databases of Medline, Embase, ISI Web of Science, Cochrane library and Scopus until the end of 2015. Standardized mean difference (SMD) with a 95% of confidence interval (95% CI) and the prognostic performance characteristics of cystatin C in prediction of AKI were assessed. Analyses were stratified based on the sample in which the level of cystatin C was measured (serum vs. urine).
A total of 24 articles were included in the meta-analysis [1948 children (1302 non-AKI children and 645 AKI cases)]. Serum (SMD = 0.96; 95% CI: 0.68-1.24; p < 0.0001) and urine (SMD = 0.54; 95% CI:0.34-0.75; p < 0.0001) levels of cystatin C were significantly higher in children with AKI. Overall area under the curve of serum cystatin C and urine cystatin C in prediction of AKI were 0.83 (95% CI: 0.80-0.86) and 0.85 (95% CI: 0.81-0.88), respectively. The best sensitivity (value = 0.85; 95% CI: 0.78-0.90) and specificity (value = 0.61; 95% CI: 0.48-0.73), were observed for the serum concentration of this protein and in the cut-off points between 0.4-1.0 mg/L.
The findings of the present study showed that cystatin C has an acceptable prognostic value for prediction of AKI in children. Since the serum level of cystatin C rises within the first 24 h of admission in patients with AKI, this biomarker can be a suitable alternative for traditional diagnostic measures.
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- Accuracy of cystatin C in prediction of acute kidney injury in children; serum or urine levels: which one works better? A systematic review and meta-analysis
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