Jaundice Diagnosis

NewsGuard 100/100 Score

Jaundice is a symptom of an underlying condition rather than a disease in itself. Jaundice is caused by an accumulation of  a yellow–green substance called bilirubin in the tissues of the body, which causes a yellowing of the skin, eyes and mucous membranes.

The condition can also cause other symptoms such as abdominal pain, itchy skin, headache, swollen abdomen, dark urine and pale stools.

Jaundice is categorized into three different forms, depending on what the underlying cause of the bilirubin build-up is. The different types of jaundice are described below.

  • Pre-hepatic jaundice – Here, the bilirubin level is disrupted prior to transportation of blood to the liver. Examples of conditions that cause this type of jaundice are hemolytic anemia and sickle cell disease.
  • Hepatocellular jaundice – Here, the disrupted bilirubin is caused by a problem in the liver and examples of conditions that cause this include liver cirrhosis and Gilbert’s syndrome.
  • Post-hepatic jaundice or obstructive jaundice – Here, bile (and therefore the bilirubin contained inside it) is obstructed and prevented from draining into the digestive system from the gallbladder. Examples of factors that may cause this are tumors and gallstones.

Clinical features

For each type of jaundice, the clinical features of the disease are different, as outlined below.

  • Pre-hepatic jaundice – There is no bilirubin present in the urine and there is an increase in the level of unconjugated bilirubin in the blood.
  • Hepatocellular jaundice – Conjugated bilirubin is present in the urine. The plasma albumin level is reduced, but globulins are raised in response to an increase in antibodies. The urine is dark-colored and the stools are either normal or pale. Enzymes alkaline phosphatase, alanine transferase and aspartate transferase are all raised.
  • Post hepatic or obstructive jaundice – The blood level of conjugated bilirubin is raised; the urine is dark-colored and the stools are pale. Alkaline phosphatase, alanine transferase and aspartate transferase levels are all raised.

Further Reading

Last Updated: Jun 17, 2023

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.

Citations

Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Mandal, Ananya. (2023, June 17). Jaundice Diagnosis. News-Medical. Retrieved on May 18, 2024 from https://www.news-medical.net/health/Jaundice-Diagnosis.aspx.

  • MLA

    Mandal, Ananya. "Jaundice Diagnosis". News-Medical. 18 May 2024. <https://www.news-medical.net/health/Jaundice-Diagnosis.aspx>.

  • Chicago

    Mandal, Ananya. "Jaundice Diagnosis". News-Medical. https://www.news-medical.net/health/Jaundice-Diagnosis.aspx. (accessed May 18, 2024).

  • Harvard

    Mandal, Ananya. 2023. Jaundice Diagnosis. News-Medical, viewed 18 May 2024, https://www.news-medical.net/health/Jaundice-Diagnosis.aspx.

Comments

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
Post a new comment
Post

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.

You might also like...
Effects of COVID-19 quarantine on outcomes in individuals with intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy