Background & Aims: There have been few clinical studies of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) in patients with acute pancreatitis. The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of SIRS in assessing severity of acute pancreatitis. Methods: We prospectively enrolled 252 consecutive patients with acute pancreatitis who were admitted directly to our institution between 2005-2007. The incidence and duration of SIRS (transient ≤48 hours vs persistent >48 hours) during the first 7 days of hospitalization, and the number of SIRS criteria (0-4) on the first day of hospitalization (day 1) were evaluated with individual markers of severity, including persistent organ failure, pancreatic necrosis, need for intensive care unit, and mortality. Results: SIRS occurred in 155/252 patients (62%) on day 1. SIRS on day 1 predicted severe disease with high sensitivity (85%-100%). The absence of SIRS on day 1 was associated with a high negative predictive value (98%-100%). Patients with a higher number of systemic inflammatory response (SIR) criteria on day 1 and persistent SIRS had an increased risk for severe disease (P < .01). Conclusions: The majority of patients hospitalized with acute pancreatitis have SIRS on day 1. The severity of acute pancreatitis is greater among patients with SIRS on day 1 and, in particular, among those with 3 or 4 SIRS criteria, compared with those without SIRS on day 1.
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