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Neonatal units in Manchester roll out genetic test for gentamicin ototoxicity

BMJ 2022; 377 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o887 (Published 04 April 2022) Cite this as: BMJ 2022;377:o887
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. The BMJ

A bedside test that detects a genetic variant in babies that can leave them deaf if they are given gentamicin is being rolled out in three neonatal intensive care units in Manchester, where it was developed.

The swab test takes just 25 minutes to deliver results, whereas the traditional test took several days. Babies admitted to intensive care are usually given gentamicin within 60 minutes, but one in 500 babies carries the gene that can make the antibiotic …

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