Early prediction of adverse outcomes in infants with acute bilirubin encephalopathy

Ann Clin Transl Neurol. 2020 Jul;7(7):1141-1147. doi: 10.1002/acn3.51077. Epub 2020 Jun 4.


Objective: Acute bilirubin encephalopathy (ABE) remains one of the important causes of neonatal mortality and child disability, early identification, and intervention which could improve outcomes. The purpose of this study was to evaluate early predictors of adverse outcomes in infants with ABE.

Methods: Newborns of gestational age ≥ 35 weeks and diagnosed with ABE were included in the study. Bilirubin-induced neurological dysfunction (BIND) score, total serum bilirubin (TSB) peak value, and serum albumin levels were determined. Adverse outcomes were defined as death or survival with auditory dysfunction and/or cerebral palsy.

Results: Eighty-two infants were eligible for recruitment in the study. The outcome data from 76 ABE infants (92%) were used for analysis, of which 25 infants got adverse outcomes and 51 live a normal life. Univariate analysis for BIND score, TSB peak value, bilirubin-albumin ratio (B/A), albumin level, abnormal AABR, and neonatal sepsis was performed to elucidate the association with adverse outcomes. Bivariate logistic regression analysis showed B/A (OR 10.48, 95%CI: 1.55-70.81, P = 0.02) and BIND score (OR 3.68, 95%CI: 1.39-9.72, P = 0.01) were correlated with adverse outcomes. ROC curve analysis showed that B/A (≥8.9 mg/g), BIND score (≥6) could predict adverse outcomes of ABE separately; B/A in conjunction with BIND score could increase prediction sensitivity to 100%.

Interpretation: Both B/A and BIND score can be used to predict adverse outcomes of ABE, and the combination of the two parameters can increase prediction sensitivity significantly.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Bilirubin / blood
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cerebral Palsy / etiology*
  • Early Diagnosis
  • Female
  • Hearing Loss / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Kernicterus / blood*
  • Kernicterus / complications*
  • Kernicterus / diagnosis*
  • Kernicterus / mortality
  • Male
  • Perinatal Death
  • Prognosis
  • Serum Albumin


  • Serum Albumin
  • Bilirubin

Grants and funding

This work was funded by Department of Science and Technology of Henan Province, China grant 171100310200; Bureau of Zhengzhou Science and Technology, China grant 131PCXTD621; Swedish Governmental grants to cientists working in health care: grant ALFGBG‐717791.