The aim of this pilot study in Beijing, China, was to validate a screening system for early detection of biliary atresia (BA) by using a modified version of the stool color card (SCC).
From 2013 to 2014, a total of 29 799 live born infants were screened. SCC was distributed in maternal facilities. Guardians were asked to check their infants¡¯ stool colors daily using SCC up until four months after birth. The screening results among 92.5% of participants were reported. Cases deemed as high risk were referred to a surgical department immediately.
Based on the results reported by the guardians, 24 infants showed pale-pigmented stools, of which two males without obvious signs of jaundice were diagnosed with BA at 52 and 55 days of age, respectively. The sensitivity was 100% and specificity was 99.9%. Four infants were confirmed as having other diseases. Two female patients failed to be screened by the SCC because they had severe jaundice and were referred to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit after birth. They were diagnosed as BA at 14 and 17 days after birth, respectively. The overall prevalence of BA in this study was 1.3 in 10 000 live births.
The modified SCC was effective and feasible for early detection of BA, especially for patients with no apparent jaundice.
Key words: early detection; jaundice; Kasai procedure; sensitivity; specificity