Assessment of G6PD screening program in premature infants in a NICU

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Targeted screening for glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency (G6PDdef) using fluorescent spot test (FST) is done in our newborn nursery (NN) and now in our NICU. Premature infants have higher G6PD levels than term infants. FST may result in under diagnosis of G6PDdef in preterms. We sought to determine if FST is appropriate for diagnosis of G6PDdef at < 35 weeks and assess screening in NICU.


Retrospective chart review of male, inborn infants < 35 weeks in NICU from 2008 to 2011. Difference in G6PDdef incidence < 5% between NN and NICU was acceptable for equivalence.


Out of 679 subjects, 442 were screened for G6PDdef and 11.3% had abnormal results. Binomial testing comparing 11.3% (95% confidence interval (CI) 8.5 to 14.6) incidence of G6PDdef in NICU and reported incidence in NN (11%) demonstrated no difference. 12.2% of Black/African American males were not screened.


FST is appropriate for screening all at-risk newborns. A number of at-risk premature males were not screened.

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