A spinal puncture made several months ago on a new-born infant with symptoms suggesting intracranial hemorrhage yielded a yellow fluid. Since then, the same type of fluid has been observed in four similar cases. A brief summary of the theories which have been advanced as to the cause of this phenomenon is here presented, together with the histories of the babies in this series.
The American literature on xanthochromia in the new-born is meager. During the last few years, Sharp and Maclaire1 have published five or six papers dealing with the results of routine spinal punctures on five series of 100 consecutive new-born infants. In fourteen of these 500 cases, spinal fluid of varying degrees of yellow was obtained on the first puncture.
Most authors, including Sharp and Maclaire, advance three theories to account for this color. These theories have been styled: (1) the serogenic; (2) the hemolytic; (3)