Jaundice is a yellowing of the skin and the whites of your eyes that results from accumulation of an intensely yellow natural substance, bilirubin. Bilirubin is contained inside red blood cells, and it is cleared out of the body in the digestive substance "bile," which drains from the liver and gallbladder. People who get jaundice usually also have dark yellow or brown urine from extra bilirubin. If you have jaundice yellow skin and eyes , this guide can help you to understand some of the most common causes that might explain your symptoms.
Jaundice in Adults - Liver and Gallbladder Disorders - MSD Manual Consumer Version
Kernicterus is a bilirubin -induced brain dysfunction. The term was coined in by Schmorl. Bilirubin is a naturally occurring substance in the body of humans and many other animals, but it is neurotoxic when its concentration in the blood is too high, a condition known as hyperbilirubinemia. Hyperbilirubinemia may cause bilirubin to accumulate in the grey matter of the central nervous system , potentially causing irreversible neurological damage. Depending on the level of exposure, the effects range from clinically unnoticeable to severe brain damage and even death.
In jaundice, the skin and whites of the eyes look yellow. Jaundice occurs when there is too much bilirubin a yellow pigment in the blood—a condition called hyperbilirubinemia. Bilirubin is formed when hemoglobin the part of red blood cells that carries oxygen is broken down as part of the normal process of recycling old or damaged red blood cells.
A more recent article on jaundice is available. Organizing the differential diagnosis by prehepatic, intrahepatic, and posthepatic causes may help make the work-up more manageable. Prehepatic causes of jaundice include hemolysis and hematoma resorption, which lead to elevated levels of unconjugated indirect bilirubin. Intrahepatic disorders can lead to unconjugated or conjugated hyperbilirubinemia. The conjugated direct bilirubin level is often elevated by alcohol, infectious hepatitis, drug reactions, and autoimmune disorders.