Delta neutrophil index (DNI) is the fraction of circulating immature granulocytes, which reflects severe bacterial infections and septic condition but has not been studied in urinary tract infection (UTI). Here, we evaluated the value of DNI in predicting acute pyelonephritis (APN) or vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) using the data of 288 patients. Conventional inflammatory markers (white blood cell [WBC] count, erythrocyte sedimentation rate [ESR], C-reactive protein [CRP]), and DNI were measured. WBC, CRP, ESR and DNI were higher in APN than in lower UTI (p < 0.01). Multiple logistic-regression analyses showed that DNI was a predictive factor for areas of lack of uptake on dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) scans (P < 0.01). The area under the receiver operating characteristic (AUC) was also high for DNI (0.622, 95% CI 0.558-0.687, P < 0.01) as well as for CRP (0.731, 95% CI 0.673-0.789, P < 0.01) for the prediction of DMSA defects. DNI demonstrated the highest area under the ROC curve for diagnosis of VUR (0.620, 95% CI 0.542-0.698, P < 0.01). To the best of our knowledge, this is a first study demonstrating that DNI can be used as a diagnostic marker to distinguish APN from lower UTI and function as a diagnostic marker indicative of VUR compared to other conventional markers.
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