Value Of Twelfth Hour Bilirubin Level In Predicting Significant Hyperbilirubinemia In Preterm Infants
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Background As hyperbilirubinemia is a significant cause of brain injury, it is important to predict the cases who are at risk. Data for preterm infants are scarce. The aim of this study is to predict significant hyperbilirubinemia in preterm infants by measuring capillary bilirubin at 12th hour of life. Methods One hundred and fifty neonates born ≤ 35 weeks were included in the study. They were categorized into two groups according to their birth weights (group 1: 1,000 - 1,499 g; group 2: 1,500 - 2,000 g). Their bilirubin levels were measured at 12th hour and daily thereafter for 5 days. Risk nomograms were generated based on their bilirubin measurements and postnatal ages. On the age-specific percentile-based nomogram, the zone above the 90th percentile was determined as high risk and those below the fifth percentile as low risk. Infants who had bilirubin levels over the limits defined according to their postnatal ages and birth weights were accepted to have significant hyperbilirubinemia and received phototherapy and predictive value of the 12th hour bilirubin was asssessed. Results Fifty-four of 57 infants (94.7%) in group 1 and 75/93 infants (80.7%) in group 2 received phototherapy. Capillary bilirubin levels of 3.55 mg/dL and 4.55 mg/dL for group 1 and group 2 measured at the 12th hour of life had the highest sensitivity, negative and positive predictive value to predict the neonates who will develop significant hyperbilirubinemia. Conclusion Bilirubin levels of preterm infants should be monitored closely. More attention should be paid to the ones who had 12th hour bilirubin level above the cutoff values.