What is Jaundice? - Holistic Of Health


What is Jaundice?


The skin, the whites of the eyes, and the mucous membranes’ yellowing are hallmarks of jaundice. This condition occurs when red blood cells in your body die, they leave behind yellow-orange fluid which is known as bilirubin. The function of the liver is to filter bilirubin from blood and waste it through faeces. Hyperbilirubinemia occurs when your liver does not properly work and cannot filter the blood and this leaks into the skin and causes the yellowing of skin.



Causes of jaundice:


Jaundice can result from the liver’s inability, a large amount of bilirubin in the body causes the condition known as jaundice. Hemolytic anaemia, an accelerated breakdown of red blood cells, or hereditary conditions influencing bilirubin metabolism.

Here are a few of the causes given below:

1. Liver Diseases: Jaundice can arise from the liver’s inability to properly handle bilirubin in conditions such as cirrhosis (scarring of liver tissue), hepatitis (inflammation of the liver), or liver cancer.

2. Obstruction of Bile Ducts: The blockage of bile ducts prevents bile from moving from the liver to the intestines, leading to an accumulation of bilirubin in the bloodstream. Such blockages might result from gallstones, tumours, or strictures (narrowings) in the bile ducts.

3. Diseases: Because they stimulate the breakdown of red blood cells or decrease liver function, several diseases, such as sepsis or malaria, can lead to jaundice.

4. Medications: Liver injury, certain antibiotics, antivirals, and chemotherapy treatments can cause jaundice, a side effect of cholestasis, or decreased bile flow.


Signs and Symptoms of Jaundice:


The most common and well-known condition of jaundice is yellowing of skin, eyes and saliva. But some are given below:

  • Dark Urine
  • Pale Stools: (because less bile flows into the intestines, stools may seem pale or clay-coloured)
  • Weariness and Weakness
  • Abdominal Pain, Stomachache and Swelling (when the inflammation of the liver or bile duct blockage)
  • Itching (pruritus)
  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite


 Diagnosis of jaundice

A healthcare provider will properly examine your condition asked about your medical history and current symptoms of the condition. After that healthcare provider orders you to take blood, urine (to check the level of bilirubin in the blood), other CT scans, and MRI to check the blockage. Biopsy to check the liver condition.

Treatment of Jaundice:


Some underlying causes of jaundice are not cured without treatment. Doctors will treat the condition that causes the jaundice.

Finding and treating the underlying illness causing the high bilirubin levels is the mainstay of managing jaundice. The particular reason may call for medication, lifestyle modifications, or surgical procedures.

1. Medications: When an infection or liver inflammation causes jaundice, doctors may prescribe antivirals and corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and improve liver function.

2. Liver Supportive Treatments: People with liver disorders or failure may find that supportive treatments include dietary changes, nutritional supplements, and abstaining from alcohol to enhance liver function and reduce symptoms.

3. Bile Duct Procedures: If an obstruction in a bile duct causes jaundice, the obstruction may need to be removed and bile flow restored through endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) or surgery.

4. Liver Transplant: When alternative therapies have proved futile, liver transplantation may be a viable course of action in severe cases of liver failure or advanced liver disease.

5. Symptomatic Relief: You can use antihistamines or topical therapies to relieve some jaundice symptoms, such as itching.


A common medical disorder, jaundice, may have mild to potentially fatal underlying causes. A quick diagnosis and suitable treatment for jaundice depend on awareness of its symptoms. Treatment usually consists of treating the underlying cause of jaundice and providing supportive care to reduce symptoms and avoid problems. Seeking medical care for appropriate assessment and treatment is crucial if you or someone you know exhibits jaundice symptoms.

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