Jaundice in Florida
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What is jaundice?
Although jaundice is most common in newborns, it can occur in adults as well. This condition makes the skin and the whites of the eyes develop into a yellow shade. This is a result of elevated levels of bilirubin, a red-orange substance in the liver. Though the condition commonly doesn’t have to be treated, it’s essential to consult with a skilled GI provider at Gastroenterology Associates of Florida in the event that you begin to notice your skin or eyes turning a yellow shade, because the underlying source could warrant treatment. For additional information on treating jaundice in Florida, reach out to our team to request a consultation now.
What are the causes of jaundice?
Jaundice develops if someone has high levels of bilirubin, which is a yellow-orange bile pigment formed in the liver from the destruction of red blood cells (RBCs). The exact cause of jaundice depends on whether it takes place prior to the process, in production, or following bilirubin production.
Reasons for jaundice before the production of bilirubin (unconjugated hyperbilirubinemia) include:
- Hemolytic anemias (blood cells are broken down before the end of their regular lifespan)
- Reabsorption of a blood suffusion (clotted blood under the skin)
Reasons for jaundice throughout the production of bilirubin include:
- Hepatitis A, B, or C
- Drinking alcohol
- Viruses (such as Epstein-Barr)
- Particular medicines
- Autoimmune disorders
The cause of jaundice following bilirubin generation could be the result of blocked bile ducts in connection with:
- Bladder inflammation
- Certain types of cancer
Some patients also have jaundice related to liver conditions. This can result if you have the following:
- Acute hepatitis A, B, or C
- Pyoderma gangrenosum (a skin disease)
- Liver inflammation (or ongoing hepatitis)
- Joint inflammation
What are the symptoms of jaundice?
Jaundice is often discovered accidentally — as a matter of fact, there is often no symptoms present. Nonetheless, several individuals will present with symptoms relating to the underlying cause of jaundice. During your visit to our Florida office, if you present with symptoms such as chills, fever, stomach aches, yellow-colored skin, dark urine, clay-colored stool, or flu symptoms, you might have jaundice resulting from an infection.
On the other hand, if your jaundice is not caused by an infection, you may discover an unintended drop in body weight or itchy skin. If your jaundice is related to cancer, pain in the abdomen is the most common symptom.
How is jaundice diagnosed and treated?
Jaundice is often detected incidentally when addressing separate problems or symptoms. Jaundice can be diagnosed when checking for symptoms of liver disease. Signs associated with this frequently include:
- Red color on the palms and fingertips (palmar erythema)
- Visible blood vessels
- Bruising on the skin
Urinalysis and blood tests may also reveal bilirubin levels. Additionally, our Gastroenterology Associates of Florida team could recommend a liver exam to assess your liver size and function.
Once it's been detected, we can start to target the root causes of jaundice. Because jaundice itself doesn’t need treatment, we will likely address the symptoms related to it. A handful of the concerns we treat are:
- Throwing up
- Loose, watery bowel movements
- Trouble having a bowel movement
- Being bloated
- Pain in the stomach or indigestion
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Find the root cause of your jaundice
If you have noticed a yellowish color to your eyes or skin, you’ve dealt with stomach discomfort, diarrhea or constipation, stomach bloating, or throwing up, it could be a sign of jaundice. While jaundice itself normally doesn’t require treatment, the underlying cause of the problem could — such as gallstones, inflammation of the liver or bladder, long-term hepatitis, or potentially cancer. The skilled GI specialists at Gastroenterology Associates of Florida specialize in treating jaundice in along with several different types of liver problems connected to it. To learn more about how to treat and prevent jaundice, contact one of our Florida locations to request a consultation.
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