Biliblanket

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A baby being treated for jaundice with a BiliBlanket

A biliblanket is a portable phototherapy device for the treatment of neonatal jaundice (hyperbilirubinemia). BiliBlanket is a trademark of General Electric's Datex-Ohmeda subsidiary, but its name has become the generic, colloquial term for a range of similar products and the term used in the medical professions. The name is a combination of bilirubin and blanket. Other names used are home phototherapy system, bilirubin blanket, or phototherapy blanket.

Biliblankets offer the possibility of treating some degrees of jaundice at home as long as the baby is otherwise healthy. This makes them quite popular with parents, doctors, and insurance companies, who would otherwise have to pay for more expensive inpatient treatment. Some also consider it a better option because the newborn does not have to be separated from the parents and does not need to lie alone in a box with his or her eyes covered. The baby is tied to the machine, unless they can wheel it around, and there is a stiff pad between the mother and baby. While this is an inconvenience, most see it as a lesser of two evils.[citation needed]

Phototherapy for jaundice involves a blue/white light of varying intensity placed close to the skin or touching it through a special, light-permeable fabric.

The whole setup consists of the light generator, termed the light box, the fibre-optic cable through which the light is carried and the light pad, which is a 25cmx13cm (10"x5") pad that's attached to the baby. Home phototherapy is not dangerous and reports suggesting that babies have been burned by biliblankets have not been proven, and are generally accepted as myths.[citation needed]