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Jaundice - Causes, Symptoms, Health Insurance Coverage

Benefits

​What is Jaundice?

Jaundice is a term used to describe the whites of the eye and a yellowish tinge to the skin. The whites of the eyes and color of the skin may differ based on the levels of bilirubin. Bilirubin is basically a waste material that is found in the blood. Moderate levels lead to a yellow color, while very high levels leads to brown. 
Jaundice can happen to people of all age groups and is normally an outcome of an underlying condition. Jaundice indicates a problem with the bile duct or liver.

Symptoms


Listed below are the common symptoms of jaundice:

  • The whites of the eyes and a yellow tinge to the skin, normally starting from the head and spreading down the body
  • Dark urine
  • Pale stools
  • Itchiness

  • Other symptoms linked with jaundice will depend on the cause but may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting
  • Pale stools
  • Fever
  • Dark urine

  • ​Diagnosis

    Doctors will ask the history of the patient and do a medical exam to check jaundice and confirm bilirubin levels. They will pay close attention to the abdomen, feel for tumors, and examine the condition of the liver. 
    A firm liver indicates scarring of liver, or cirrhosis. A rock-hard liver will indicate cancer. Many tests can confirm jaundice. The first is a liver function test to check whether or not the liver is working properly. 

    If a doctor is unable to find a cause, he/she may suggest you blood tests to check bilirubin levels and the composition of the blood. These include:

  • Bilirubin tests:
  • A high level of unconjugated bilirubin compared to the levels of conjugated bilirubin indicates hemolytic jaundice.

  • Hepatitis A, B, and C tests:
  • This tests for a range of liver infections.

  • Full blood count (FBC), or complete blood count (CBC):
  • The measures of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. 

    The doctor will check the structure of the liver if they analyze an obstruction. In these cases, they will use an imaging test, including CT, MRI, and ultrasound scans. 

    Treatment


    Jaundice treatment aims the cause rather than the jaundice symptoms.
     

    Below-mentioned treatments are used:


  • Anemia-induced jaundice may be cured by increasing the amount of iron in the blood by either eating more iron-rich foods or taking iron supplements.
  • Hepatitis-induced jaundice needs steroid or antiviral medications.
  • Doctors can cure obstruction-induced jaundice by surgically detaching the obstruction.
  • If jaundice has been caused by a certain medication, treatment involves shifting to an alternative medication.

  • ​Health Insurance

    Suffering from health issues is not only physically taxing but can also drain you financially. Therefore, it is advised to buy health insurance policy which will provide financial coverage that can take care of medical expenses and hospitalization bills. It takes care of pre and post hospitalization bills. If you buy health insurance, you will not only get the cashless treatment from a network hospital where the bill is directly settled by your insurance provider with the hospital but will also enjoy tax benefits under section 80D of Income Tax Act, 1961. Make sure to know your policy details and covers before purchasing a health insurance policy​.