Please what is the cause of jaundice in a new born baby?
SEVERE Neonatal Jaundice ... EMPHASIS on the Severe... can cause serious complications including Developmental delay and cerebral palsy.
Bilirubin is a substance that is produced when red blood cells no longer needed by the body are broken down.

So it is a waste product of red blood cells breakdown that should be removed from the body. This job of removing this bilirubin is done by the liver normally.

In adults, this is not an issue because the red blood cells survive for 120 days in normal healthy adults and after it is old and broken down, the bilirubin is removed by the liver which is matured and there is usually no problem in healthy individuals.

Now in newborns, there are issues with this mechanisms and that is why jaundice is so common in them apart from even abnormal conditions that can also cause jaundice.

The newborn has too many red blood cells compared to adult. This is because they need many to steal away oxygen from the mum in the womb since they are not breathing in air directly for their own oxygen.

When the baby is born, he or she can now get oxygen directly and does not need so many red blood cells, the extra have to be destroyed which means more bilirubin production.

The Liver in the newborn is still immature so it cannot handle so much bilirubin that are produced by the destruction of the red blood cells.

This is why the bilirubin initially become high in the blood causing yellowish staining of the skin and eyes before the liver is able to handle and clear them away from the system eventually.
Jaundice is actually due to high level of a substance called BILIRUBIN in the blood of the Newborn.

It is this Bilirubin that is actually yellow in colour…..and it is the staining of the eyes and skin by bilirubin that causes the yellowish discolouration known as Jaundice.

In fact another name for jaundice in newborn is Neonatal Hyperbilirubinaemia…..too much bilirubin.

Remember this bilirubin, because all problems from Jaundice is the bilirubin and all treatment for jaundice in the newborn is to remove bilirubin or at least to make it safe because bilirubin is toxic or poisonous to the brain of a newborn