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Jaundice typically occurs because newborns normally produce increased levels of bilirubin, which is referred to as "physiologic jaundice." Bilirubin, which is yellowish in color, is produced when red blood cells are broken down and is removed from the bloodstream by the liver. In newborns, the body may produce more bilirubin than the newborn's liver can process.

Physiologic jaundice usually appears within a few days after birth and resolves within two weeks. Other types of newborn jaundice can be due to prematurity, problems related to breastfeeding, infection, and blood or liver problems.

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Archived: March 20, 2014

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Read the Original Article: Understanding Newborn Jaundice -- the Basics