Newborn Screening Test

Newborn screening tests are used to identify serious health conditions in newborn babies. These conditions are often treatable if caught early, so newborn screenings are important for keeping them healthy.

This article will provide information about the newborn screening process and help you make an informed decision.

A neonatal screening test is performed on newborns to detect certain conditions present at birth, such as preterm babies, babies with low birth weight, NICU, or sick newborns.

About the Newborn Screening Test

Newborn screenings are typically performed soon after a baby is born, and most samples or tests are recommended to be taken or done within 48–72 hours of the newborn's birth. If you cannot get the tests done during this time, you can get them done until the baby is 13 days old. The tests are usually performed before the baby leaves the hospital.

The decision of whether or not to have your baby screened is personal. However, it is important to be informed about the risks and benefits of newborn screening before making a decision.

Newborn Screening Tests Are Done for the Following Reasons or Conditions:

  • The most common tests screen for rare conditions that might hamper the child's normal development and cause serious health problems. There are different types of newborn blood screening tests to check:
  • Certain genetic disorders
  • Hearing loss
  • Critical congenital heart defects (CCHDs)
  • Few metabolic disorders.
  • Thyroid function
  • What to expect from the newborn screening test?

Risk Factors Associated With the Neonatal Screening Test

The baby's heel may have red spots around its pricks. Several babies may have bruises, which typically disappear over several days, although these tend not to be noticeable.

Preparing for the Newborn Screening Test

Try to comfort the baby by nursing or feeding it before and after the procedure. Keep the baby warm and held so it will be comfortable during the procedure.

What to Expect from the Newborn Screening Test?

  • There are two newborn screening tests: blood tests and heel prick tests. Blood tests are performed by taking a small blood sample from the baby's heel and sending it to a lab for analysis. Heel prick tests are performed by pricking the baby's heel and collecting a few drops of blood on a particular card. These cards are then sent to a lab for analysis.
  • A hearing test is done by placing a tiny earpiece or microphone in the infant's ear.
  • CCHD screen is done by placing a small, tiny sensor on the hand or foot of the baby. This sensor is attached to an oximeter that is used to measure the baby's oxygen levels through these sensors.

Possible Results of Newborn Screening Test

Babies will not need any further testing or treatment after a negative screening. However, it may need further testing and treatment if a condition is found. It usually takes 4–8 weeks for the results to come. Mostly, the results are normal. Doctors will notify parents if a condition is detected and recommend additional testing and treatment.


Newborn screening tests are important for detecting health problems in newborns. Registering yourself before the delivery is important to ensure your baby is healthy.

Request an appointment at Apollo Cradle, Amritsar - Abadi Court Road. Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment.

1. Is a newborn screening test necessary?

A newborn screening test is required to learn about your baby's health and rule out the risk of any condition.

2. When is the best time for newborn screening?

The first screening test is recommended between 24 and 48 hours after the baby's birth.

3. Where is newborn screening done?

It is done in the nursery or the room in the hospital where the newborn is with the mother. A trained technician does it in the presence of a doctor.

4. How long does it take for the results of the newborn screening?

It takes around 4–8 weeks for the test results to be shared with the parents and the hospital.

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