Comparison of light emitting diode and compact fluorescent lamp phototherapy in treatment of neonatal hyperbilirubinemia

Maharoof M.K., Shamshad Ahmed Khan, Prakash Robert Saldanha, Reshad Mohamed


Background: High levels of total serum bilirubin can cause life threatening complications in neonates requiring management either with phototherapy or exchange blood transfusion. Most commonly used modality of phototherapy is with blue light. There are many bulbs like fluorescent tubes, halogen spotlights etc. Due to disadvantages of the available bulbs, newer method like light-emitting diodes (LEDs) has been investigated as possible alternatives as they produce low heat, has a longer life span with lower energy consumption and rapid reduction of serum bilirubin level. The aim was to compare the efficacy between phototherapy equipped with light emitting diode (LED) to compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) in the treatment of neonatal hyperbilirubinemia among neonates.

Methods: A hospital-based intervention study was conducted among 50 neonates born in the hospital during the study period, with gestational age more than equal to 35 weeks, being breastfed and healthy in a private medical college teaching hospital in Dakshina Kannada district from August to September 2016.  Following ethical committee clearance the neonates looking icteric by clinical examination were randomly allocated to receive CFL or LED phototherapy. Baseline, 24 hour total serum bilirubin and rectal temperature was measured.  

Results: A total of 50 neonates were randomly allocated into two groups with almost similar characteristics between the two groups with respect to gender, type of delivery and gestational age. The mean bilirubin values (in mg/dl) among neonates in the CFL group and LED group were 14.8 and 15.6 respectively and post 24 hour values were 11.54 and 10.68 respectively. The mean difference in the reduction in the bilirubin values before and after receiving phototherapy between the two groups were significant (p <0.001). The increase in temperature was lesser among LED treatment group.

Conclusions: LED therapy is better than the CFL therapy in terms of mean reduction in the total serum bilirubin after a fixed duration of time and lesser raise in temperature among the neonates.  


LED, Neonates, Phototherapy

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