Vitamin B12 Deficiency Associated With Hyperbilirubinemia and Cholestasis in Infants

Pak J Med Sci. May-Jun 2018;34(3):714-718. doi: 10.12669/pjms.343.14564.


Objective: To study the correlation between vitamin B12 deficiency and hyperbilirubinemia and cholestasis in infants.

Methods: The study group consisted of 215 infants who were tested for serum B12 and bilirubin levels out of 335 cases referred to the Centre from June 2011 to 2016 as a part of the screening program established by the Ministry of Health. The following information was obtained from the case files: demographic data; background; family history; serum vitamin B12, folate, plasma homocysteine, and urine methylmalonic acid (MMA) levels; and direct, indirect, and total bilirubin levels.

Results: About 48.8 percent of cases had vitamin B12 deficiency. No significant differences were found when those cases with vitamin B12 deficiency and those without vitamin B12 deficiency were compared in terms of total, direct, or indirect bilirubin levels. Only two cases (0.9 percent) had cholestasis.

Conclusion: The study suggests vitamin B12 deficiency is a common phenomenon (48.4 percent), similar to what has been suggested by other studies conducted in Turkey. Therefore, the presence of vitamin B12 deficiency in cases with cholestasis or hyperbilirubinemia may show an association. To prove the correlation between them, more studies are required.

Keywords: Cholestasis; Hyperbilirubinemia; Vitamin B12 deficiency.