: To assess the high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) levels and explore the risk factors for an elevated hs-CRP level. We also provide the clinical utility of CRP to identify subjects with metabolic syndrome (MetS). Methods
: Data were drawn from a cross-sectional survey in China. Subjects were divided into three subgroups: hs-CRP ≤ 1 mg/L, 1 mg/L < hs-CRP ≤ 3 mg/L and hs-CRP > 3 mg/L. Multiple linear regressions and logistic regression models were used. Results
: In the Chinese population, 50.43% subjects had a low hs-CRP level, 30.21% subjects had an intermediate hs-CRP level and 19.36% subjects had an elevated hs-CRP level. Age, physical inactivity, abdominal obesity, a low LDL level, an elevated fasting glucose level, uric acid and urinary albumin to creatinine ratio (ACR) were correlated with log-CRP. In multivariate analysis, relative risks of an elevated CRP level were 2.40 (95% CI 1.44–3.99, p
= 0.001), 3.63 (95% CI 2.20–5.98, p
< 0.001), 4.23 (95% CI 2.51–7.11, p
< 0.001) and 6.23 (95% CI 3.45–11.26, p
< 0.001) for subjects with 1, 2, 3, or more than 3 MetS components, respectively. The accurate estimates of the area under the receiver operating characteristic of hs-CRP for MetS was 0.6954 (95% CI, 0.67–0.72). Conclusion
: Age, physical inactivity, abdominal obesity, a low LDL level, an elevated fasting glucose level, uric acid and ACR are correlated with log-CRP. The number of MetS components is a significant determinant of elevated CRP levels after adjusted for other potential confounders.