Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.


Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Baby jaundice guidance updated

  • Comment

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has released new guidance on how babies with jaundice should be cared for.

A blood test should be taken within two hours of birth from a child with suspected or obvious jaundice and doctors and nurses have been told not just to rely on how a baby looks, as it can be hard to judge the severity of the condition solely by visual inspection.
NICE’s guidance also advised that newly born babies should be frequently checked in the first three days to quickly identify children whose jaundice could lead to serious problems. A blood test to check levels of serum bilirubin should be administered within two hours of birth, and then every six hours in the first day for actual or suspected cases.
After children with suspected jaundice are more than a day old, a transcutaneous bilirubinometer (TBM) scanning device should assess those who were born after the 35th week of pregnancy. The guidance also states a serum bilirubin test should be carried out for children delivered before 35 weeks of pregnancy and jaundiced within 24 hours of being born.
Neurological condition kernicterus, which has been linked to cerebral palsy, hearing loss and sight problems, can be caused by severe jaundice and jaundice which goes on for a long time can indicate a serious liver disease which needs urgent medical care.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.