What is Jaundice ?

Jaundice (yellow fever )

Highlights
• Do I need to worry about my baby’s jaundice of the newborn ?
• What is the cause?
• How common is jaundice in newborns ?
• How to treat jaundice ?
• How do I know if my baby has jaundice?
• Do dangerous jaundice ?

Should I worry about my baby’s jaundice of the newborn ?
About three- quarters of all normal, healthy babies will have yellow skin in the first few days after birth . If your baby , you do not need to worry, but it is good for you to tell your pediatrician , especially if your baby’s abdomen or legs look yellow. If your baby is dark skinned , white eyes or palms of the hands or feet are yellow . If your baby was born full term , often her skin and eye color will return to normal a week after birth . This will take longer if your baby is born before reaching full term .

What is the cause?
Jaundice develops in a healthy baby when the blood contains excess bilirubin – Bilirubin is a chemical produced during the normal breakdown of red blood cells . Newborns tend to have higher bilirubin levels because they have extra red blood cells that carry oxygen and their livers are still just can not metabolize the excess bilirubin . When bilirubin levels rise above normal , yellow jaundice will move from the head down, neck , chest , and in severe cases , it will be up to the toes . Jaundice like this is known as physiological jaundice , often do not cause damage to healthy babies (as distinct from the more serious kind and unusual nature caused by liver disease or illness resus ) .

In very rare circumstances , the newborn has jaundice will suffer damage to the nervous system – but this happens only when the bilirubin level is too high .

How common is jaundice in newborns ?
• 50 per cent of babies born prematurely develop jaundice on the second or third day after birth . It will go away after a week.
• 80 percent of premature babies develop jaundice in five to seven days after birth . Usually it will be gone two months after birth .
How to treat jaundice ?
If you are breastfeeding your baby , you should regularly hardship . You may have to surprise your baby sleep through a feeding . This time you will need lots of rest, water , food and support.

If your baby is breastfed , he should not be given any other liquids such as formula milk or water as frequent breastfeeding will restore jaundice.

If your baby is jaundiced or appears unwell , your doctor may conduct blood tests to measure your baby’s bilirubin levels . The doctor will also need to look at the cause of jaundice if it started after seven days or lasts more than 14 days.

Some babies may need additional treatment , usually phototherapy . Your baby should be in hospital and light blue light will be placed in her bed. The light helps break down bilirubin so that the kidneys can get rid of excess . Phototherapy side effects including rash and diarrhea but it is important that the bilirubin . Often this is done in baby care center at the hospital .

Infants who require phototherapy need to lie on his bed clothes and blue light emitted from the lamp . This will affect feeding and bonding with your baby . An alternative to traditional phototherapy is an optical fiber therapy . Your baby will be wrapped in a special blanket with optical fiber , the little lights that shine directly onto her skin . For this treatment you can still cuddle and feed your baby . However, the treatment is not effective optical fiber as traditional phototherapy in babies born prematurely . Local experience also shows that sometimes the treatment of optical fibers become too hot for premature babies. However, when used in conjunction with traditional phototherapy , treatment of optical fiber is the most effective treatment for infant jaundice menhidapi .

There are also cases where the jaundice is caused by infection and this might need to be treated .

Infants with the disease may develop jaundice resus . But the disease is extremely rare. Pregnant women routinely have their blood to prevent resus , and you will know if you are resus negative . Your baby’s blood will also be checked and an anti – D injection is given at birth. There also occur ( although very rare ) for a baby with jaundice due to resus disease , treated by blood transfusions .

How do I know if my baby has jaundice?
Experts recommend this simple test at home to check for jaundice . Get a well-lit room , and press gently on your baby’s nose or forehead , if there is a yellow color of the skin when pressure is released , contact your pediatrician . This technique is very good for children who are fair-skinned , if you are dark-skinned baby , the way is to check the color of the eyes yellowish white or gum . You will also notice that your baby’s stools pale .

Remember , jaudis is common and usually it is temporary, and will recover quickly without any intervention and have no long-term effects . You can ask your pediatrician for help if you have any doubts .

Does jaundice dangerous ?
Yes , it can be dangerous. Do not take it lightly jaundice. Studies have shown that if the excess bilirubin beyond a certain level , your baby’s hearing is affected. At the highest level , the brain will be affected and this condition is known as kernicterus .