Justification: Neonatal cholestasis is an important cause of chronic liver disease in young children. Late referral and lack of precise etiological diagnosis are reasons for poor outcome in substantial number of cases in India. There is a need to create better awareness among the pediatricians, obstetricians and primary care physicians on early recognition, prompt evaluation and referral to regional centers. Process: Eminent national faculty members were invited to participate in the process of forming a consensus statement. Selected members were requested to prepare guidelines on specific issues, which were reviewed by two other members. These guidelines were then incorporated into a draft statement, which was circulated to all members. A round table conference was organized; presentations, ensuing discussions, and opinions expressed by the participants were incorporated into the final draft. Objectives: To review available published data on the subject from India and the West, to discuss current diagnostic and management practices in major centers in India, and to identify various problems in effective diagnosis and ways to improve the overall outcome. Current problems faced in different areas were discussed and possible remedial measures were identified. The ultimate aim would be to achieve results comparable to the West. Recommendations: Early recognition, prompt evaluation and algorithm-based management will improve outcome in neonatal cholestasis. Inclusion of stool/urine color charts in well baby cards and sensitizing pediatricians about differentiating conjugated from the more common unconjugated hyperbilirubinemia are possible effective steps. Considering the need for specific expertise and the poor outcome in suboptimally managed cases, referral to regional centers is warranted.
- Cholestatic jaundice
- Practice guidelines