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A randomized control trial of phototherapy and 20% albumin versus phototherapy and saline in Kilifi, Kenya

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Dorcas N. Magai, Michael Mwaniki, Amina Abubakar, Shebe Mohammed, Anne L. Gordon, Raphael Kalu, Paul Mwangi, Hans M. Koot, Charles R. Newton

Original languageEnglish
Article number617
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sep 2019

King's Authors


Objective: The study evaluated the efficacy of phototherapy and 20% albumin infusion to reduce total serum bilirubin (TSB) in neonates with severe hyperbilirubinemia. The primary outcome was a reduction of TSB at the end of treatment. The secondary outcomes were the need for exchange transfusion, inpatient mortality, neurological outcomes at discharge, and development outcomes at 12-months follow-up. Results: One hundred and eighteen neonates were randomly assigned to phototherapy and 20% albumin (n = 59) and phototherapy and saline (n = 69). The median age at admission was 5 (interquartile range (IQR) 3-6) days, and the median gestation was 36 (IQR 36-38) weeks. No significant differences were found in the change in TSB (Mann-Whitney U =609, p = 0.98) and rate of change in TSB per hour after treatment (Mann-Whitney U = 540, p = 0.39) between the two groups. There were no significant differences between the two groups in the proportion of participants who required exchange transfusion (χ2 (2) = 0.36, p = 0.546); repeat phototherapy (χ2 (2) = 2.37, p = 0.123); and those who died (χ2 (2) = 0.92, p = 0.337). Trial registration The trial was registered in the International Standardized Randomized Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN); trial registration number ISRCTN89732754.

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