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Newborn screenings in Missouri now include cystic fibrosis


Jefferson City, MO – Newborn babies in Missouri are now being screened for cystic fibrosis.

It's the latest to be added to more than two dozen tests that all newborns get for rare but serious health conditions.

Like most screenings, testing for cystic fibrosis is done by collecting a drop of blood from the baby's foot and sending it to the state's public health lab.

The Department of Health and Senior Services estimates about 25 infants would be confirmed as having cystic fibrosis in Missouri each year. Testing started last week.

People with cystic fibrosis have a defective gene, and the body produces unusually thick mucus that can lead to life-threatening lung infections. It also makes it difficult for the body to break down and absorb food.

Missouri now tests babies for all but one of the 29 conditions recommended by the March of Dimes. That last one, biotinidase deficiency, expected to be added in the next year.


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