July 1967

Is Hypoglycemia an Important Complication in Erythroblastosis Fetalis?

Author Affiliations

Burlington, Vt
From the Department of Pediatrics, University of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington.

Am J Dis Child. 1967;114(1):88-90. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1967.02090220094016

THE PURPOSE of this communication is to call attention to the occurrence of hypoglycemia in infants with moderate or severe erythroblastosis fetalis. This observation has been reported previously1-3 but we believe that it has not received sufficient attention. Infants severely affected with erythroblastosis fetalis often have symptoms of apnea, respiratory distress, cyanosis, limpness, poor feeding, and tremors. These symptoms, while nonspecific, are also commonly found in neonatal hypoglycemia.4 Since we adopted a liberal policy of doing blood glucose determinations in the nursery for any of the above symptoms, we have encountered three cases of hypoglycemia in infants with erythroblastosis fetalis due to Rhesus factor (Rh) incompatibility. The clinical details of these cases are summarized below and the Figure summarizes the course of the blood glucose concentrations observed.

Report of Cases  Case 1.—A 3,030 gm (6 lb 10½ oz) girl was born to a 24-year-old, gravida 3, para 2,

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