Minnesota Newborns Now Screened for SCID
What is SCID? How does newborn screening for SCID work?
- SCID (Severe Combined Immunodeficiency) is a life-threatening primary immunodeficiency characterized by low/absent T-cells.
- Newborn screening for SCID uses the measurement of T-cell receptor excision circles (TRECs). Low levels of TRECs correlate with the presence of T-cell lymphopenia, and may indicate that the patient has SCID.
What if my patient has a positive newborn screen for SCID?
- A positive screen is not diagnostic. Confirmary testing is required. False positive screens are seen in NICU babies.
- Your office will be contacted by a genetic counselor from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) newborn screening program.
- As soon as possible, contact a Clinical Immunologist for further instructions and care coordination.
- Contact the patient’s family to provide guidance and to arrange follow-up.
What advice should I give parents of a child with a positive newborn screen while we pursue further testing?
- Wash your hands before and after caring for your infant; ask others to do the same.
- Avoid sick contacts.
- Limit the number of visitors to your home.
- Avoid unnecessary exposure to large groups of people (ex. daycare, church, shopping malls).
- Avoid breastfeeding until confirmatory tests have been completed; use distilled or boiled water for mixing formula.
- More blood needs to be drawn as soon as possible.
Who can I contact for more information about newborn screening for SCID?
- Reach a provider at Midwest Immunology Clinic by calling 763.577.0008.
- Minnesota Department of Health – Newborn Screening Program www.health.state.mn.us/newbornscreening
- Immune Deficiency Foundation – http://idfscidnewbornscreening.org