Intended for healthcare professionals


Hyperbilirubinaemia in term infants

BMJ 2000; 320 doi: (Published 08 January 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:119

Identifying infants who might benefit from routine measurement of bilirubin during first 48–72 hours of life

  1. Simon Mitchell, consultant neonatal paediatrician (,
  2. Narad Mathura, senior house officer
  1. Hope Hospital, Salford M6 8HD
  2. Department of Paediatrics, City Hospital, Birmingham B18 7QH
  3. Center for Breastfeeding, 8 Jan Sebastian Way, Number 13, Sanwich, MA 02563, USA

    EDITOR—The observation reported by Spurgeon of an increased likelihood of readmission with jaundice after earlier neonatal discharge is well made.1 Lee et al showed that jaundice and dehydration were more severe in newborn infants requiring readmission to hospital after the mean age at discharge fell from 4.5 to 2.7 days,2 while Maisels and Kring found a significantly increased risk for readmission with jaundice among newborn infants discharged from hospital before 72 hours of age.3

    In the United Kingdom all newborn infants and mothers can be visited at home regularly by community midwives during the first seven days after discharge. These health professionals are skilled in infant capillary blood sampling and often measure serum bilirubin concentrations as part of …

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