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J Paediatr Child Health. 1997 Oct;33(5):451-3.

A case of kernicterus in New Zealand: a predictable tragedy?

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1
Department of Paediatrics, Wellington School of Medicine, University of Otago, New Zealand.

Abstract

A case of neonatal kernicterus due to glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency (G6PD) is described. Diagnosis was delayed as the primary healthcare attendant had no knowledge of this condition and its potential to cause rapidly escalating levels of bilirubin and as she was reassured by the lack of signs of systemic illness or anaemia. The baby has been left deaf, blind, intellectually handicapped, epileptic and paralysed due to athetoid cerebral palsy. The re-organization of perinatal care in New Zealand, which has led to neonates sometimes being managed solely by primary healthcare attendants with minimal training in paediatrics may have increased the risk of a late diagnosis of potentially devastating diseases such as this.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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