Is visual assessment of jaundice reliable as a screening tool to detect significant neonatal hyperbilirubinemia?
ABSTRACT To assess the reliability of visual assessment of bilirubin levels (BiliEye) in newborns as a screening tool to detect significant neonatal hyperbilirubinemia.
5 neonatologists and 17 nurses estimated 3,532 BiliEye in 1,129 term and late preterm (> or = 35 weeks) infants before discharge from the nursery, at 62 +/- 24 hours. Total serum bilirubin (TSB) levels were measured concomitantly.
Mean TSB and BiliEye were 6.7 +/- 2.9 mg/dL (range, 0.4-18.2 mg/dL) and 6.6 +/- 3.2 mg/dL (range, 0.0-17.2 mg/dL), respectively, with good correlation (Pearson's r = 0.752, P < .0001), but other measures of agreement were poor. 61.5% of the 109 babies with TSB levels in high-risk zones were clinically misclassified. The area under curve (AUC) of the receiver-operating characteristics plotted for these high-risk zones was 0.825, but became low for early discharge (< or = 36 hours; AUC = 0.638) and late preterm (35-37 weeks; AUC = 0.613). There was significant interobserver variation (low weighted kappa, 0.363).
Although there was good correlation between BiliEye and actual TSB level, visual assessment was unreliable as a screening tool to detect significant neonatal hyperbilirubinemia before discharge. Babies with TSB levels within high-risk zones may be clinically misdiagnosed as low-risk, resulting in inadequate follow-up.
Article: Transcutaneous bilirubinometry[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Although the modern era of transcutaneous bilirubin monitoring (TcB) began only about 35 years ago, this screening tool is now widely used in newborn nurseries and outpatient clinics, offices, and emergency departments to obtain a rapid and non-invasive estimate of the degree of hyperbilirubinemia. TcB devices have become more sophisticated, and major breakthroughs include the following: (a) ability to report a bilirubin value rather than an index value, (b) enhanced correction for chromophores other than bilirubin, and (c) technologic improvements including interface with electronic medical records. Good agreement with laboratory bilirubin measurement has been demonstrated, and the ability of TcB screening to predict and decrease the incidence of subsequent hyperbilirubinemia has been well-documented. To date, it has not been shown that this screening results in improved long-term outcomes.Seminars in Perinatology 10/2014; · 2.42 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Breastfed newborns are more likely to develop prolonged hyperbilirubinemia than those fed formula, but the prevalence of prolonged hyperbilirubinemia in a largely white, North American breastfed population is unknown. In this population, we documented the natural history of jaundice and the prevalence of prolonged hyperbilirubinemia, and we evaluated the utility of assessing the cephalocaudal progression of jaundice in office-based practices.METHODS: We measured transcutaneous bilirubin (TcB) levels during the first month in 1044 predominantly breastfed infants ≥35 weeks of gestation and assigned a cephalocaudal zone score to each infant at the time of the TcB measurement.RESULTS: TcB level was ≥5 mg/dL in 43% of infants at age 21 ± 3 days and 34% were clinically jaundiced. At 28 ± 3 days, the TcB was ≥5 mg/dL in 34% and 21% were jaundiced. There was a strong correlation between the TcB level and the jaundice zone score, but there was a wide range of TcB levels associated with each score.CONCLUSIONS: Practitioners can be reassured that it is normal for 20% to 30% of predominantly breastfed newborns to be jaundiced at age 3 to 4 weeks and for 30% to 40% of these infants to have bilirubin levels ≥5 mg/dL. The jaundice zone score does not provide an accurate assessment of the bilirubin level, but a score of zero (complete absence of jaundice) suggests that the level is unlikely to be >12.9 mg/dL, whereas a score of ≥4 usually predicts a level of ≥10 mg/dL.Pediatrics 07/2014; · 5.30 Impact Factor
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