Hyperbilirubinemia is the accumulation of bilirubin, a brownish-yellow compound that is formed when old or damaged red blood cells are broken down. Normally, bilirubin is chemically altered by the liver so that it can be safely excreted in stool and urine. In anyone, however, the condition may be indicative of disease. With hyperbilirubinemia, the excessive buildup of bilirubin can manifest with the characteristic symptoms of jaundice , including:. Complications may occur, primarily in newborns, if bilirubin levels become toxic in the brain.
High Bilirubin Levels in Adults
What Is Considered to Be a High Bilirubin Level? | Reference.com
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. Bilirubin is carried in the bloodstream to the liver, where it binds with bile. Bilirubin is then moved through the bile ducts into the digestive tract, so that it can be eliminated from the body. Most bilirubin is eliminated in stool, but a small amount is eliminated in urine. If bilirubin cannot be moved through the liver and bile ducts quickly enough, it builds up in the blood and is deposited in the skin.
Elevated bilirubin in adults: Causes and home remedies
Bilirubin is a yellowish substance in your blood. It forms after red blood cells break down, and it travels through your liver, gallbladder, and digestive tract before being excreted. Typically, bilirubin levels fall somewhere between 0. Anything above 1.
Casey Holley is a medical writer who began working in the health and fitness industries in 1995, while still in high school. She has worked as a nutrition consultant and has written numerous health and wellness articles for various online publications. She has also served in the Navy and is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in health administration from the University of Phoenix. Bilirubin is a byproduct of the liver processing waste. When the liver isn't functioning properly, bilirubin may begin to build up in the body.