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J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1990 Jan;10(1):82-6.

Epidemiology of neonatal jaundice in the Jerusalem population.

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Department of Neonatology, Bikur Cholim Hospital, Jerusalem, Israel.


Of 10,122 singleton babies born from January 1, 1984 to March 31, 1988, we compared 1,154 term infants with high serum bilirubin levels (greater than 12.9 mg/dl) to 1,154 infants with low serum bilirubin levels (less than or equal to 12.9 mg/dl) randomly selected from the remaining 8,968 subjects. We found that a high bilirubin level was significantly associated with male sex; maternal diabetes (chronic and gestational); pregnancy-induced hypertension; previous sibling with neonatal jaundice; delivery by cesarean section, vacuum, or forceps; epidural anesthesia; mother with blood type O; first delivery; cephalohematoma; short gestation; lower birth weight; and lower birth order (p less than 0.01); and older maternal age, low percentile for birth weight, and the percentage of weight loss during hospitalization (p less than 0.05). Variables with significantly different frequencies in control and study groups were used in a multivariate analysis, thus further refining the data by the use of logistic regression. Teenage mothers (less than or equal to 19 years old) had the lowest risk, whereas older mothers (greater than 35 years old) had the highest risk of all age groups for having an infant with neonatal jaundice. First delivery and previous sibling with neonatal jaundice were also risk factors. Male sex, short gestation, and delivery by vacuum extraction were other notable risk factors. Our results suggest that, even among industrialized Western societies, risk factors may interact differently to produce higher neonatal serum bilirubin levels. The importance of a risk factor may also be dependent upon its relative prevalence in a parturient population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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