Mercy Hospital & Health Services Contact Us
MyChart
About Mercy
Join Our Team
set font size large set font size medium set font size small
email this page print this page
Health Illustrated Encyclopedia Banner
Health Illustrated Encyclopedia

Disclaimer:
Our Health Information Database is provided by A.D.A.M. the leading provider of electronic and printed information for professionals and consumers in healthcare and industry. It provides authoritative, reliable content written and reviewed by an editorial board who represent a variety of specialty areas. This board reviews and evaluates all healthcare information to ensure it is accurate, reliable, and can be used with complete confidence. And now you have access to the same authoritative, trusted clinical information relied upon by health professionals around the world.
Neonatal cystic fibrosis screening

Definition

Neonatal cystic fibrosis screening is a blood test that looks for increased levels of immunoreactive trypsinogen (IRT), an enzyme produced by the pancreas.

The test is performed on newborns to screen for cystic fibrosis (CF). Cystic fibrosis is an inherited disease that causes thick, sticky mucus to build up in the lungs and digestive tract

Alternative Names

Cystic fibrosis screening - neonatal; Immunoreactive trypsinogen; IRT test

How the test is performed

A sample of blood is either taken from the bottom of the baby's foot of a vein in the arm. A tiny drop of blood is collected onto a piece of filter paper and allowed to dry. The dried blood sample is sent to a lab for analysis.

How to prepare for the test

There is no special preparation needed.

Some states include this test in the routine newborn screening tests that are done before the baby leaves the hospital.

If you live in a state that does not perform routine CF screening, your health care provider will explain whether testing is needed.

How the test will feel

The brief feeling of discomfort will probably cause your baby to cry.

Why the test is performed

Children with CF who are diagnosed early in life and start treatment at a young age may have better nutrition, growth, and lung function. Newborn screening tests allow doctors to identify children with CF before they have symptoms.

Normal Values

Normal values vary from lab to lab. Ask your doctor or testing center for details.

What abnormal results mean

It is important to remember that a positive screening test for cystic fibrosis does not diagnose cystic fibrosis. If your child's test is positive, further tests will be done to confirm the possibility of CF. Not all children with a positive screening IRT test have CF.

What the risks are

Risks associated with the test include:

  • Infection (a slight risk any time the skin is broken)
  • Anxiety over false positive tests
  • False reassurance over false negative tests

Special considerations

The IRT level does not indicate the severity of the CF. False-positives may occur.

References

Farrell PM, Rosenstein BJ, White TB, et al. Guidelines for diagnosis of cystic fibrosis in newborns through older adults: Cystic fibrosis consensus report. Pediatrics. Aug 2008;153(2).

View Spanish Version

Encyclopedia Home
Drug Note Home
Health Information Home

Images

Care Points
    Read More

    Review Date: 7/14/2010

    Review By: Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

    The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2010 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

    www.adam.com
    www.mercyweb.org
    follow us online
    facebook youtube


    Contact us
    Home  |  Sitemap

    Disclaimer & Terms of Use  |  Privacy Statement  |  Notice of Privacy Practices
    Copyright ©2013 Mercy. Last modified 2/16/2011