Povidone-iodine in umbilical cord care interferes with neonatal screening for hypothyroidism

Eur J Pediatr. 1994 Oct;153(10):756-8. doi: 10.1007/BF01954494.


Out of 1346 newborns screened for congenital hypothyroidism, 31 non-hypothyroid infants were summoned because of a thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) level above 10 microU/ml. False-positive TSH levels were significantly more frequent in the babies treated with povidone-iodine (4.6%) than in those treated with either alcohol or triple dye (0.7%). CONCLUSION. Iodine containing solutions should be avoided in umbilical cord care of the newborn.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Hypothyroidism / blood*
  • Hypothyroidism / diagnosis
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Neonatal Screening*
  • Povidone-Iodine / administration & dosage
  • Povidone-Iodine / adverse effects*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Thyrotropin / blood*
  • Umbilical Cord*


  • Povidone-Iodine
  • Thyrotropin