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The Importance of Newborn Screening

Newborn screening is vital because it helps in establishing, whether the baby has various numbers of distressing conditions. Therefore, newborn babies should be screened within twenty fours, after they have been born. Parents should be aware of the consequences that are going to happen, if the baby fails to go for a newborn screening test. The test is not complicated like most people think, it is straightforward. A pediatrician pricks the heel of the newborn and the blood sample is used in checking, whether the baby is suffering from any type of disease. The blood test will help the pediatrician to diagnose the disease early and this will make treating the disease to be easier.

Advantages of early screening

There are some diseases and illnesses, which are found in newborn babies and the best way of finding them, is through new born screening. There are some states which allow babies to be screened for various diseases and illnesses. Some of the diseases which can be screened include:

  • Congenital adrenal hyperplasia;
  • Congenital deafness;
  • Cystic fibrosis;
  • Congenital Hypothyroidism.

According to health experts, more than thirty conditions should be screened but this will depend on certain circumstances. There are some states which offer newborn screening for more than fifty conditions and diseases.

How the process of screening takes place

Newborn screening is a very simple and straightforward procedure. A nurse pricks the heel of the baby and then collects the drops of blood. Newborn screening test should be done within twenty four or forty eight hours, after the baby is born. Then the nurse takes a few droops of blood to the lab, which is specialized in offering these tests. The nurse later analyses the results, for various disorders and illnesses. After the nurse finishes newborn screening test the lab results are taken to a pediatrician or the family doctor. Normal results will show that the new born is unlikely to be affected by various conditions that were tested. An abnormal result will show that, there is a problem and it requires another test to be done, to find out whether the baby has been affected by a certain illness or condition. After the additional testing has been done and confirmed that there is a problem, treatment should start immediately.

Most states do newborn hearing screening before the baby leaves the hospital. If neonatal hearing screening is not done in your state, then it is prudent to arrange for the test immediately. One thing about hearing problems is that, they can affect the ears or they can be part of something that is complicated. Newborn hearing screening is something which needs relevant test because most hearing problems cannot be detected easily.

Neonatal screening

This type of screening is very important and the aim of the screening is to avoid mental and physical retardation to the child. The downfall of neonatal screening is that, it is costly and the test requires careful processing. Newborn screening test is not considered as a single laboratory tests, it is a program which helps, in detecting of diseases and to monitor the child physical development. There are specific health experts that can perform this test such as nurses, neonatologists, endocrinologists, chemical workers and geneticists. The success of the screening program will largely depend on how effective the organization is.

Health experts recommend that, all children should be screened before they leave the hospital. In future DNA technology is going to be applied in neonatal screening, it will help in detecting adult’s neonatal hearing screening disorders.

Life threatening and brain damage diseases can be tested through newborn screening test; they can as well be treated, if they are identified early. If they are not identified early, they will lead to damage or death. There are more than three thousand babies who are born with a disorder which can be screened but not all the states screen for all illnesses. Health problems such as cerebral palsy, austin and other types of diseases can be prevented through screening. There are so many babies, who were not given the right diagnosis and there are some diseases, which do not show symptoms.

After taking your baby for a newborn screening test, you should make sure that you get the results. If the doctor does not tell you the results ask for them. Incase the baby fails any of the newborn screening test; make sure that the baby gets an additional test do not wait. Talk to your doctor and find out what is required. A failed newborn screening test means that, the baby results showed that, the baby is having a condition but this does not mean that the baby has the condition. It means that more testing is required. Finding these conditions, after birth will help in preventing other health complications like brain damage, organ damage and death.