Jaundice (Hepatitis)

Jaundice is a case where the skin and the eyeballs become yellow and is caused due to bilirubin erythrocyte fragmentising. Jaundice is caused by the abnormal circulation in the biological circumstances of the organism and the increase of blood bilirubin levels due to this structural deficiency. It is a sign of diseases in the liver and the gall bladder tract.

If it is related to the liver, it is under the department of Gastroenterohepatology, if related to the gall bladder tract then it is under the department of Liver Gall Bladder Tract Surgery.

Every case of jaundice requires a doctor in the fastest time frame possible.

Jaundice is evaluated in three different ways according to its causes:

  • Before the liver (prehepatitis): it is the jaundice (haemolytic jaundice) caused by an excessive amount of erythrocyte destruction. For example; newborn jaundice. This is caused by a caesarean or premature birth.
  • Due to the problems in the liver (hepatic): This is caused by the inability of the liver to change indirect bilirubin into direct bilirubin. The indirect bilirubin levels are high. It is seen in the cell diseases of the liver tissue (such as infectional hepatitis).
  • After liver (posthepatitis): Jaundice after the liver, the indirect bilirubin has been changed into direct bilirubin in the gall bladder tract however this does not flow into the intestines; instead it flows into the blood and increases the direct bilirubin levels in the blood. As the diseases become chronicle, the bilirubin levels increase further because the liver cells are not conducting their duties.


People mistake jaundice for viral hepatitis and presume that every jaundice is a ‘’viral hepatitis’’. However, jaundice is not a disease it is a symptom. Many diseases may cause the symptoms of jaundice. For example gall bladder stones may cause jaundice. However this is not related to viral hepatitis and is not contagious.

There are three types of jaundice

  • Haemolytic jaundice: the gall mixes with the blood due to the red blood cells being destroyed. The patients’ urine is a normal colour and their stool is dark.
  • Hepatic jaundice: It is a liver infection caused by a virus. The liver cells swell up and block the gall bladder tract. Its symptoms reveal themselves slowly. The patient has a high temperature, loss of appetite, diarrhoea and puking. This is the most commonly seen type of jaundice.
  • Obstructive jaundice: This is caused due to blocked gall bladder tracts.

These are their common symptoms:
The yellow colour caused by the disease is firstly seen in the whites of the eyes. Then it spreads into the face, neck, body, arms and legs. The urine colour changes between yellow and brown. The skin starts to itch. The stool is soot coloured and smells bad. The first requirement of treatment is rest. A strict diet must be followed.