Archive for the 'jaundice' Category

Jaundice

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

Jaundice, or icterus, is a yellowish pigmentation of the skin, the conjunctival membranes over the sclerae (whites of the eyes), and other mucous membranes caused by hyperbilirubinemia (increased levels of bilirubin in the blood). This hyperbilirubinemia subsequently causes increased levels of bilirubin in the extracellular fluids. Typically, the concentration of bilirubin in the plasma must exceed 1.5 mg/dL ( > 35 micromoles/L), three times the usual value of approximately 0.5 mg/dL, for the coloration to be easily visible. Jaundice comes from the French word jaune, meaning yellow.