An infant normal at birth now appears jaundiced at 6 weeks. What is the most likely diagnosis?
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Biliary atresia is characterized by obliteration of the extra hepatic bile ducts and causes obstruction to bile flow.
If biliary atresia is not surgically treated, cirrhosis is the end result. Infants typically present at 2 to 8 weeks of age with jaundice, dark urine, and light stools.
Direct bilirubinemia is always an abnormal finding and biliary atresia should always be in the differential diagnosis.
Investigations indicate that cytomegalovirus infection may have a role in the etiology of 25% of cases. The conjugated bilirubin is not excreted, and the only current treatments are surgical: repair of the biliary tree or liver transplant.
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Pediatric Lab Normals
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