How does phototherapy cure jaundice for newborn babies?

Excrete via urine. Jaundice is a result of accumulation of bilirubin, end product of destroyed red cells. The bilirubins deposited under skin undergoes change in physical character when exposed to special light, i.e. To become water soluble. This change allows excess bilirubins deposited under skin to be excreted through urine.
Aids in clearing . Many years ago they noticed that babies near the windows in the nursery had less jaundice than those against a wall. This led to discovery of the specific light wave length that helped the most. The light can penetrate the skin deep enough to help break down the jaundice molecules like the liver does & help it clear faster.

Related Questions

I have a hh agency (new), peds & just had first time request for light therapy for newborn jaundice infant. What complications are there?

See below. Blue light therapy for jaundice is standard for breaking down the bilirubin that is being produced and seen in the skin and sclera. As long as the child's eyes are protected and hydration is monitored along with the bilirubin levels (by a health care professional), i fore see no complications as long as the bilirubin level is lowering and the child is not sick as well. Read more...
Light therapy . If the baby has cholestatic jaundice there is risk of "bronze baby" syndrome (they turn a dark gray color). If the baby has congenital erythropoietic porphyria they can develop blisters. (ask family history). Otherwise unless the family doesn't feed or change the baby while under lights the bigger risk is of not treating the jaundice. Read more...

When should we do phototherapy in neonatal jaundice.

Doctor's call. Jaundice phototherapy management is a doctor's decision which follows by the AAP guidelines and VK Bhutani's curve. It depends on the infant's assessment: his clinical status, underlying conditions (e.g. sepsis), inherited diseases (e.g. G6PD), gestational age (lower treatment threshold for the more premature), hours or days of infant's life, bilirubin fractions, albumin level, blood type, DAT. Read more...