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Brigham and Women’s Hospital Develops Simple Ruler to Diagnose Jaundice

Dr. Anne “CC” Lee, a pediatrician in the Department of Newborn Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, had two of her own children born with severe jaundice that required phototherapy treatment and prolonged hospitalization. Jaundice is a yellow coloring of the skin caused by hyperbilirubinemia, or excess bilirubin in the blood that, if left untreated, can release into the brain and can cause severe brain damage or lifelong disability for newborn babies. In developed countries like the United States, we have virtually eliminated adverse outcomes due to jaundice thanks to available screening and treatment. However, that is not the case for many countries in the developing world where jaundice screening in newborns is often unavailable or too expensive.

Source: USAID

The Bili-ruler validation study, published in Pediatrics.

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