Analyses for newborns
During the first days of life we carry out the hearing screening of the newborn, called registration of optoacoustic emission (OAE). With timely intervention and help the negative effects of congenital hearing defects can be minimized. Screening can also determine cases with not just deafness but decreased hearing.
If the results of the screening are abnormal, a repetitive screening must be performed after one month. If the second screening shows similar results, the child’s brainstem biopotential (ABR) must be assessed. ABR is carried out at TÜK Ear Clinic or East Tallinn Central Hospital during the baby’s 3rd month.
Babies who were born healthy are vaccinated against tuberculosis and hepatitis B during the first days of life. Vaccination is performed only with the parent’s consent.
We normally test newborns against two very rare but very serious diseases – phenylketonuria and congenital hypothyroidism. Blood samples are taken by nurses and/or midwives onto special testing cards on the 3rd-5th day of life. Babies who leave the hospital during their first two days of life (younger than 48 hours) are called back to the maternity hospital for the analyses.
The test cards are sent to genet centre of the united lab of SA TÜK, where analyses for both illnesses are performed. If the results are higher than normal, we perform a repetitive test on the same card and then on a new test card.
Results of the analyses
If the results are normal, we don’t notify GP-s and family members, but we do send the results to the (maternity) hospital where the child was born. All results are archived in the laboratory. We notify you or your GP only if the results are not within the norm.
Repetitive tests are performed if:
- the test card has been filled with inadequate quality and testing is therefore impossible,
- the first test result is above the norm.
In these cases, we call the newborn in for a repeated test.