Pathologic jaundice in newborns

Criteria to be fulfilled to call newborn jaundice as pathologic –
-appearance of jaundice with in the first 24 hours of life
-high levels of conjugated bilirubin – causing staining of nappies
-clinical jaundice beyond 3rd week of life
-high total bilirubin levels

Total bilirubin levels are generally called high when in newborns the bilirubin levels are as following in the respective days of life-
-1st day of life if >5 mg/dl
-2nd day of life if >10mg /dl
-3rd day onwards if >15mg /dl

Cases of pathologic jaundice needs to be properly investigated for the cause.

Treatment options consists of any of the following or more –
-correction of the cause
-phototherapy
-exchange transfusion.

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