Objective Hyperbilirubinemia is a common problem in newborn infants. It can progress to develop kernicterus in a severe form, unless intervention is initiated. The aim of this study was to determine the therapeutic effect of clofibrate in full-term neonates with non-haemolytic jaundice.
Methods A randomised clinical trial study was performed in two groups of full-term healthy jaundiced neonates: the clofibrate-treated group (n = 30) and control group (n = 30). Infants in the clofibrate group received a single oral dose of 100 mg/kg clofibrate, whereas the control group received a placebo of distilled water (same colour and volume) and both groups received phototherapy. Serum total and direct bilirubin levels were measured at the beginning, 16, 24, 48 and 74 h, respectively. Data were analysed with SPSS, t test and Fisher’s exact test.
Results The mean total serum bilirubin (TSB) level of control and clofibrate groups at enrollment was 17.5 ± 2.34 and 18.21 ± 1.85, respectively, with no significant difference (p = 0.199). The mean TSB in the control and clofibrate group after 48 h was 11.43± ±2.38 and 10.09 ± 2.40, respectively (p<0.047), which was significant (p<0.026). At the end of 72 h 25 (83.3%) cases in the clofibrate group and 16 (53.3%) cases in the control group were discharged. That difference is significant (p<0.026). No side effects were observed on serial examination during hospitalisation, on the first and seventh day after discharge.
Conclusion Clofibrate resulted in a faster decline in TSB, shorter duration of hospitalisation and had no side effects.