ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 144-149

The efficacy of Silybum marianum (L.) Gaertn. (Silymarin) in the treatment of physiological neonatal jaundice ( a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, clinical trial)


1 Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Beni-Suef University, Egypt
2 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Beni-Suef University, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Lamyaa M. Kassem
Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Beni-Suef University, 82524 Beni Suef
Egypt
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.7123/01.EPJ.0000421667.70605.8a

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Back ground and aim of work

Unconjugated hyperbilirubinemia (UCB) is one of the most common conditions in neonates. Conventional treatments are phototherapy and exchange transfusion. Phototherapy is safe and effective, but it has several disadvantages, which indicates the need to develop alternative pharmacological treatment strategies. These alternative treatment strategies should be less invasive and at least as effective and safe as phototherapy. The present study was designed to investigate the effects of Silybum marianum (silymarin) on the duration of phototherapy, which is known to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, hepatic-protective, and regenerative properties, including enhancing glucuronidation activities.

Patients and methods

A randomized double-blind clinical trial was conducted on 170 full-term healthy neonates with UCB divided into two well-matched groups. Of the 170 neonates, 85 received 3.75 mg/kg of silymarin orally, twice daily, in addition to phototherapy, and 85 received placebo and phototherapy. Total serum bilirubin was measured every 24 h, and alanine aminotransferase (SGPT) and alanine transaminase (SGOT) levels were measured before and after therapy in both groups.

Results

The mean duration of phototherapy was found to be significantly reduced from 5.3±0.82 days in the control group to 4.2±0.76 days in the silymarin-treated group (P=0.001). SGPT and SGOT levels were significantly normalized (P=0.001).

Conclusion

Silymarin at a dose of 3.75 mg/kg twice daily along with phototherapy was more effective than phototherapy alone in treating full-term healthy neonates with UCB.



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