Jaundice is a disease symptom manifested by yellowing of the whites of the eyes, mucous membranes and skin. It is often accompanied by dark colored urine and unnaturally light colored stools. Sometimes there is also intractable itching of the skin. All these symptoms are a consequence of an excess of bilirubin, the bile pigment formed by the breakdown of red blood cells. Jaundice is one of the non-specific symptoms that can indicate a wide variety of conditions, and therefore require expanded diagnosis.
Jaundice as a consequence of abnormal liver function
Among the conditions manifested by yellowing of the skin coat are diseases in the course of which bilirubin is abnormally metabolized in hepatocytes, i.e. liver cells.
Such a symptom is most often a consequence of viral hepatitis A, B or C or tumors within this organ. It can also be a symptom of cirrhosis or liver damage caused by the toxic effects of various substances.
Disorders of the organ generally result from alcohol, drug abuse or certain medications, especially from the group of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, paracetamol or statins.
Post-alcoholic or drug-induced liver failure can be partially alleviated by taking care of a rational diet, for example, in the form of a high-protein preparation Fresubin Hepa DRINK. Slightly less frequently, jaundice is a symptom of congenital genetic disorders – an example is the harmless Gilbert syndrome.
Prehepatic causes of jaundice
Excess bilirubin can also have pre-hepatic causes – then it is said to be so-called hemolytic jaundice. It occurs as a result of hemolysis, which is an intense process of erythrocyte breakdown. It is so intensified that the liver is unable to metabolize such large amounts of bilirubin. This pigment is therefore deposited in the skin and the whites of the eyes .
Excess bilirubin can also be the result of the absorption of a very extensive hematoma. It is worth mentioning that the process of breakdown of red blood cells is also the main cause of neonatal jaundice. However, this one should not be considered a disease entity, but a natural physiological process. The concentration of the orange pigment in the blood increases in the baby a few days after birth, and in many newborns it reaches such a high level that a pronounced yellowing of the epidermis appears. Such jaundice resolves spontaneously and does not require treatment.
Jaundice – mechanical causes
Jaundice can also have extrahepatic causes. Then we speak of the so-called congestive jaundice, at the root of which lies an obstruction in the outflow of bile from the liver or bile ducts caused by a mechanical obstruction.
This type of jaundice can be a consequence of a narrowing of the bile ducts due to deposits of stones in them. But it is also sometimes a consequence of tumors in the bile ducts, gallbladder or pancreas, blocking the free flow of bile.
Mechanical jaundice is often the first alarm signal indicating a cancerous process developing in the body. Regardless of what disease the patient is facing, it is worthwhile to support liver health with the benefits of clinical dietetics. A rich selection of preparations recommended for various diseases can be found at nutritionaznaczenie.pl.
The above article is not medical advice. Before use, read the package insert or consult your doctor or pharmacist, as any drug used inappropriately endangers your life or health.