Baby's First Hours

Lifesaving Screenings

Sometime during your newborn's first two days of life, blood will be drawn from her heel and screened for certain disorders. Exactly which disorders she'll be tested for depends on where you live.

All states require testing for congenital hypothyroidism and phenylketonuria (PKU), a rare but serious metabolic disease. Most states also test for sickle-cell disease. Before delivery, ask your doctor what other screenings are done routinely. If any metabolic disorders appear in your family history and your state doesn't screen for them, your doctor can order specific tests.

Copyright © 2002 Denise Porretto. Reprinted with permission from the December 2002 issue of Parents magazine.

All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.

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