What's jaundice and should I be concerned that my baby has it?

As the only way the baby can get what it needs in preganancy is through blood, your baby had many more red blood cells than it needs once born and the body starts to break these down. Also the baby's liver is not quite as effective at removing bile pigments as it will be later in infancy. The result of all this is that the by-product of red cell breakdown, bilirubin, builds up even in normal circumstances and can stain baby's skin yellow. So all babies go through this normal process and it is usually cleared up within by ten days of delivery; this is called physiological jaundice. If the jaundice is severe or prolonged, it requires expert investigation and treatment.
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