Causes of symptoms and treatment of increased bilirubin in the blood

A high level of bilirubin can indicate serious diseases such as hepatitis, cancer of the gallbladder and its ducts, cancer of the pancreas, cirrhosis. In all these cases, indirect bilirubin rises. The most obvious external manifestation is icteric coloration of the skin and sclera, darkening of the color of urine, lightening of the stool. With these symptoms, a person goes to the doctor and immediately goes to the hospital. It makes no sense to discuss how to use natural remedies.

In severe forms of anemia, direct bilirubin is increased – there is a pronounced hemolysis of red blood cells. Here, the feeling of well-being is so obvious that you should not worry that you overlook such a state. A doctor will easily identify him.

But 90% of cases when there is concern about a high level of pigment in the blood and when natural remedies to support the liver can be very useful are the so-called Gilbert’s syndrome – a moderate increase in indirect bilirubin throughout almost a lifetime. It does not enter the part of the liver cell where it must be inactivated and remains unbound.

And since the pigment does not dissolve in water, it cannot be rendered harmless by the kidneys, so it circulates in the blood and can easily enter the cells of the nervous tissue, where it damages the brain phospholipids. Of course, this process is very slow and inactive, but for that it goes daily if nothing is done to protect.

The nature of Gilbert’s syndrome is hereditary. For the first time manifested at a young age, by chance – by analysis. It occurs in approximately 5% of Europeans. But Africans in more than 40% of cases.

The hereditary nature of the origin of the disease creates a misconception about its safety among the owners of Gilbert’s syndrome. As a rule, during a consultation I come across the fact that the diagnosis is established, but the doctor did not advise anything. As if this is not required. But this is not so. We said that not a normal level of pigment is always a disease. Therefore, over time, a person is increasingly worried about a change in skin color and chronic fatigue occurs.

One of the central complexes of biochemical blood analysis is the study of pigment metabolism in the body. To evaluate it, indicators of total bilirubin and individual fractions allow it.

In daily practice, doctors often have to deal with conditions when, according to the results of studies, elevated bilirubin in the blood is recorded.

How to correctly assess such a condition, why it arose and what needs to be done with it, is described in general terms in this article.

To understand a simple person, bilirubin is a pigmented chemical substance that is constantly formed in the body and must circulate along only one metabolic pathway. Its direction consists of several consecutive links in the chain of the bilirubin cycle. These include:

  1. The formation of bilirubin. It occurs in the spleen, where red blood cells that have completed their life cycle are destroyed. With the breakdown of hemoglobin, total bilirubin is formed. Through the splenic vein, it rushes into the systemic circulation. The portal vein brings it to the liver, where neutralization occurs;
  2. Conjugation. The basis of this process is its connection with glucuronic acid, which occurs in the liver. This is necessary in order to neutralize blood bilirubin, because it is very toxic to tissues;
  3. Breeding. Conjugated (bound) in the liver bilirubin is less toxic to the body and therefore should be removed from the body as soon as possible. This happens by isolating it from the liver with bile into the duodenum. The main part is excreted with feces in the form of stercobilin. The part that is absorbed in the small intestine is excreted by the kidneys in the urine as urobilin.

Important to remember! Bilirubin is a breakdown product of blood elements that has toxic properties in relation to the tissues of the human body. The liver acts as the main responsible body for its neutralization and elimination from the body!

To assess the state of bilirubin metabolism in the body allows a biochemical blood test. Key indicators include:

  • Indirect bilirubin. This indicator reflects the part of bilirubin that did not pass the neutralization in the liver;
  • Direct bilirubin is a fraction that has been inactivated in liver cells by binding to glucuronic acid;
  • Total bilirubin is a combination of direct and indirect bilirubin. This indicator is the most important reference point in assessing bilirubin metabolism and determines the feasibility of determining individual fractions of bilirubin. If it is normal, then this is not necessary. If the norm is exceeded, there is a need for a detailed study of the fractions of this substance, which will help determine the cause of the increase in bilirubin in the blood.

The generally accepted norms of bilirubin metabolism are shown in the table.

Bilirubin indexChildren of the first days of lifeChildren up to 2 weeks of lifeChildren after a monthAdults
Total (in μmol / L)From 24 190 upFrom 28 210 upFrom 3,5 20,4 upFrom 8 20,5 up
Direct (in micromol / l)0,5 – 10,21 – 12,40 – 5,10 – 5,1
Indirect (in μmol / L)23,5 – 179,827 – 197,6Until 16,5Until 16,5

Bilirubin as an extremely toxic compound causes intoxication of the body and impaired functioning of important organs. The most sensitive in this regard are the tactics of the brain.

All other systems (heart, liver, kidneys) are more resistant to its action and for a long time are able to function in conditions of increased bilirubin concentration.

It all depends on the severity of such an increase, which is called hyperbilirubinemia.

  1. Slight excess of the normative indicator. This type of hyperbilirubinemia can be attributed to an increase in the level of total bilirubin to 50-70 μmol / L. It does not pose a direct threat to life, since it does not cause severe intoxication and toxic damage to internal organs. A person can live with such bilirubin for a long time, but it is necessary to determine the causes of this condition;
  2. A marked increase in bilirubin in the blood. These numbers include its concentration up to 150-170 μmol / L. Such conditions are dangerous, but not critical. The prolonged existence of such hyperbilirubinemia causes severe intoxication, which should be eliminated in the near future;
  3. Severe hyperbilirubinemia. They say about it when the level of bilirubin rises to 300 μmol / l. With such numbers of this indicator, there is a direct threat to the patient’s life in connection with severe intoxication and impaired functioning of internal organs;
  4. Extremely severe hyperbilirubinemia. Digits of bilirubin that exceed 300 µmol / L are not compatible with life. If the cause of such an increase is not eliminated within a few days, this will lead to the death of the patient.

Important to remember! The main indicator of bilirubin metabolism in the body is total bilirubin. The degree of its increase determines the danger to human life and health. Indices of direct and indirect bilirubin allow you to tentatively determine the cause of deviations from the norm! Sclera and skin jaundice are the main symptom of bilirubin increase

Any pathological changes in the body are reflected in the form of certain symptoms. This rule is also relevant in relation to hyperbilirubinemia, which manifests itself:

  • Jaundice of the skin and sclera of the eyes. It occurs when the bilirubin content is more than 50 μmol / L. Its nature and intensity depends on the cause of the pathology and the degree of increase in the substance content;
  • Itchy skin;
  • Bitterness in the mouth;
  • Dark urine;
  • White color of feces;
  • General weakness;
  • Impaired memory and intellectual abilities;
  • Enlarged liver and heaviness in the right hypochondrium.

It is not always easy to determine the probable reason why bilirubin rises. But only after finding out why this happened, you can decide how you can help a person. The main diseases that may be hiding behind hyperbilirubinemia are shown in the table.

Elevated Bilirubin FractionMain reasons
The predominant increase in indirect bilirubin. The basis is the excessive destruction of red blood cells.Hemolytic jaundice
  • Infectious diseases (malaria);
  • Hemolytic anemia;
  • Splenomegaly and hypersplenism;
  • Intoxication of external and internal origin;
  • Hemolysis in newborns with Rh conflict;
  • Incompatibility of transfused blood.
The predominant increase in direct bilirubin. The basis is a violation of the outflow of bile.Obstructive jaundice
  • The presence of stones inside the bile ducts and choledocholithiasis;
  • Atresia of the biliary system;
  • Mirizia Syndrome;
  • Cancer of the gallbladder and ducts;
  • Cholangitis;
  • Caroli’s disease;
  • Chronic pancreatitis (indurative);
  • Pancreatic cancer with localization of the tumor in the head.
Increase in total bilirubin with a uniform distribution of fractions. Most characteristic of liver disease.Parenchymal jaundice
  • Viral and toxic hepatitis;
  • Damage to the liver due to infectious diseases of any localization and sepsis;
  • Cirrhosis of the liver;
  • Liver cancer and metastases of malignant tumors;
  • Fatty hepatosis of alcoholic or other origin;
  • Genetic breakdowns of bilirubin metabolizing enzymes (Gilbert, Dabin-Jones, Rotor syndromes);
  • Pilephlebitis;
  • Badda-Chiari Syndrome.

Increased bilirubin in newborns refers to physiological transient conditions

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How can I help

It must be understood that an increase in bilirubin in the blood is not a separate pathological condition that requires specific treatment. Such a phenomenon should be considered only as a sign of a number of diseases.

The most important thing is to correctly identify exactly the one that caused the changes in the analysis results. Only treatment for a causative disease normalizes bilirubin.

Therefore, in the presence of hyperbilirubinemia, it is unacceptable to try to help in other ways.

Many sources of information indicate that a special diet, herbs and other methods can help reduce bilirubin. But this is nothing more than an absurdity.

The norm of bilirubin: a table of indicators by age

An important examination of human health is a general blood test. Based on this analysis, the content of such an important substance as bilirubin can be established. Its high rate indicates the development of any serious disease that occurs in the human body.

What is bilirubin?

Yellowing of the skin and sclera of the eyes as a result of disorders associated with bilirubin is called jaundice. Read more about her in this article.

As a result of the processing of primary bilirubin by the liver, it becomes safe and safely leaves the human body with urine and feces.

Most often, staining of feces in a dark color indicates the removal of purified bilirubin from the body.

Very often, new red blood cells are formed in a person, and old ones are destroyed accordingly, with the help of bilirubin the body is released from “unnecessary” red blood cells quickly and safely.

Total bilirubin means the amount of indirect and direct bilirubin in the body.

  • Indirect bilirubin (not conjugated) is very toxic to the body, since it has recently been isolated from blood hemoglobin and the liver has not yet managed to neutralize it. This type of substance is completely insoluble in water, but it is highly soluble in fats. In the case of penetration of indirect bilirubin into healthy cells, they disrupt normal functioning
  • Direct or conjugated bilirubin is the bile substance that has been treated with the liver and is now not toxic, as it is cons />

To make the correct diagnosis, you need to find out which type of bilirubin is elevated, since many different causes affect the increase in direct and indirect pigment.

The value of the norm of bilirubin varies in males and females. In women, as a rule, bilirubin is produced in smaller quantities than in men.

During pregnancy, a woman significantly increases the production of bilirubin, as a woman’s body has a heavy load.

It is necessary to monitor the level of pigment in the blood of a pregnant woman constantly, since a large amount of bilirubin can indicate the development of serious diseases: cholecystitis, viral hepatitis, hemolytic anemia. The norms of the amount of bilirubin are presented in table No. 1 and table No. 2.

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Table 1. The norm of bilirubin in the blood in men and women.

The norm of bilirubin in the bloodIn menWomenIn pregnant women
I termII termIII trimester
Total bilirubin μmol / L3,4 – 17,13,2 – 17,05 – 21,25 – 21,25 – 21,2
Direct bilirubin μmol / L0,7 – 7,90,9 – 4,31 – 8,91 – 10,10 – 11,2
Indirect bilirubin μmol / LUntil 16,26,4 – 16,83,9 – 214,5 – 22,84,9 – 23,9

Table 2. The norm of indicators of bilirubin in the blood in children of different ages.

The norm of bilirubin in the bloodNewborn babiesFirst 4 days of life5 – 10 days1 месяцOlder than 1 month
Total bilirubin μmol / L23,954,3 – 90,152,2 – 69,19,2 – 14,5The norm is like an adult
Direct bilirubin μmol / L14,445,5 – 82,344,3 – 63,36,7 – 10,4
Indirect bilirubin μmol / L8,727, 877,72 – 8,711,2 – 4,5

In children, bilirubin plays an equally important role in the body than in an adult. This substance is responsible for the quality functioning of the liver and other organs.

In a child, as in an adult, there are 3 types of bilirubin: general, direct and indirect.

The last bilirubin in large quantities is considered dangerous for the baby’s health, as it causes severe intoxication of the body (mainly cells and brain tissues are affected).

The baby’s body becomes a yellowish tint, but as soon as the liver begins to function normally, jaundice passes.

Newborn children should still be closely monitored by a pediatrician, especially in the first days after birth.

If physiological jaundice does not pass by the child’s one and a half month old age, this is considered abnormal and indicates a violation in the baby’s liver and gall bladder.

Doctors identify several main reasons for which the level of bilirubin in the human body rises:

  1. Blood diseases with increased decay of red blood cells (hemolysis), resulting in excessive bilirubin formation.
  2. Pathological changes in the liver, due to which there is a violation of the processing of indirect pigment in a straight line.
  3. Overlapping the bile ducts, as a result of which the normal outflow of bile is disturbed.

Attention! The increased breakdown of red blood cells indicates such pathologies as: malaria, poisoning of the body with various toxic substances, certain types of anemia, and may also be present during blood transfusion, which differs in blood group and Rh factor from the required, when confirming the Rh conflict of the child’s blood with maternal blood (this pathology is found only in newborn children) and after heart surgery and with a diagnosis of heart failure.

With pathological changes in the liver, as a result of which it is not capable of processing indirect bilirubin in the direct:

  • acute hepatitis of toxic and infectious origin;
  • alcoholic hepatitis;
  • congenital insufficiency of enzymatic substances of the liver (Gilbert syndrome);
  • cirrhosis of the liver;
  • oncology in the liver;
  • lack of vitamin B 12;
  • exposure to liver cells of various toxic substances of chemical or plant origin;
  • fatty liver disease (not due to drinking);
  • poor blood supply and low oxygen content in blood cells.

With pathologies of the gallbladder, direct bilirubin rises, which is also unfavorable for the body. An increase in direct pigment can occur as a result of:

  • gallbladder infections causing pathological changes in the tissues of the organ;
  • inflammatory processes in the biliary tract;
  • narrowing of the ducts along which bile is excreted;
  • cholangitis, cholecystitis and pancreatitis;
  • taking certain medications that reduce the production of bile, for example, oral contraceptives containing estrogens;
  • when stones get into the bile ducts;
  • helminthiasis and giardiasis;
  • neoplasms in the gallbladder.

Attention! As a result of a violation of biliary excretion, human feces acquire a clay (light) shade, this occurs with insufficient processing of bilirubin.

When bilirubin is increased due to a violation of the outflow of bile, the doctor prescribes choleretic drugs that increase the secretion of the enzyme in the gallbladder, which means that with its excretion, bilirubin will also decrease. If hereditary diseases that affect the formation of bilirubin are diagnosed, various vitamin-mineral complexes, choleretic drugs, and sorbents are prescribed as treatment.

If bilirubin is elevated due to infectious diseases of the liver, as well as after inflammatory processes in it, it is advisable to prescribe hepatoprotectors, antiviral and antibacterial therapy.

You can take such a drug for the liver as Karsil.

If the increase in pigment is associated with poisoning of the body, you can take various antioxidants and sorbents, for example, Enterosgel, Polysorb, activated charcoal.

To lower the level of bilirubin in the body, you must necessarily adhere to proper nutrition. It is recommended to drink more than 2,5 liters of pure still water, fresh juices, berry fruit drinks, and herbal teas daily.

Strong tea, coffee, and carbonated soft drinks should be discarded. You can not drink alcohol in any, even the most minimal amounts, with increased bilirubin. Food should be balanced and easily digestible. Fatty, spicy and fried foods will have to be abandoned completely.

It is good to eat various cereals when eating a diet: rice, buckwheat, and oatmeal.


This type of treatment can be used if other therapies do not work, or cannot be used for any reason (for example, during pregnancy). Phototherapy is also used to reduce bilirubin in newborns. Under the influence of special photolamps, the indirect pigment becomes direct and leaves the human body without problems.


Bilirubin can also be reduced with the help of alternative therapy. Herbal decoctions and infusions from plants such as corn stigmas, chamomile, motherwort, St. John’s wort, and birch leaves are considered very effective remedies.

To prepare the infusion, you need 1 tbsp. pour a spoonful of a mixture of these herbs 200 ml of boiling water and let the infusion stand for at least 30 minutes. The medicine is taken 2 times a day before meals. It is always necessary to brew a fresh drink.

To control the level of bilirubin in the blood, it is necessary to regularly take appropriate tests, diagnose and treat various diseases that cause increased pigmentation in time.

To maintain a normal level of bilirubin, you need to adhere to proper nutrition, abandon bad habits.

It is important to remember that an elevated bilirubin content is very dangerous for the human body.

Studies on the level and concentration of blood cells, enzymes, proteins and other elements are called biochemical analysis. Their results show how well systems and organs function. One of the important indicators of a state of health is bilirubin, a natural pigment substance. The norm of bilirubin indicates a stable vital activity of the body, especially the liver. When the concentration of a substance changes, this may indicate malfunctions and disorders of a number of organs.

To understand why pigment is so important, you need to know where bilirubin comes from and what its main task is.

The substance is formed as a result of the breakdown of red “transport” blood elements – red blood cells. In its original form, it is highly toxic. The pigment is carried by the bloodstream to the liver cells, where it is converted and loses its harmful properties. Once in the liver, the substance is excreted in the feces and urine.

Pigment is considered a strong antioxidant. Bilirubin is responsible for neutralizing free radicals that accelerate the aging of the body and destructively affect the functioning of various structures and organs.

Therapy is aimed at eliminating the cause that triggered an increase in pigment

What is bilirubin in a blood test: elevated, what does it mean, causes and treatment

What is bilirubin?

Bilirubin (B) is a toxic chemical compound formed during the disposal of red blood cells. The liver is engaged in its disposal. The process protects the whole organism and especially the brain from poisoning. An increase in level B is an indicator of the disorder of pigment metabolism and the functioning of liver enzymes.

What is bilirubin?

The source of bile pigment is heme – the iron-containing part of the transport protein of blood. Aging red blood cells are the main suppliers of B. Every day, 1% of their total number breaks up to form 300 mg of a yellow-brown substance.

Through portal veins, it enters the liver, where it changes properties: it becomes water-soluble, loses toxicity. With bile it appears in the intestines, staining the stool. Part passes through the kidneys and excreted in the urine.

A healthy body contains a minimum of B, so there is no toxic effect on its part.

Biochemical analysis is performed on an empty stomach. The biomaterial is taken from a vein. The day before the procedure, you must refrain from fatty and alcoholic. The results are affected by:

  • Caffeine.
  • Herbs of choleretic action.
  • A strict diet or overeating.
  • Medicines that affect blood coagulation.
  • Pregnancy.

Analysis on B is shown in the following conditions:

  • Hemolytic and gallstone disease.
  • Intoxication.
  • Pancreatic inflammation.
  • Determining the health of the liver.
  • Yellowness
  • Monitoring the treatment.

Table. Norm B in adults is the same in men and women.

Type of hyperbilirubinemiaLevel (μmol / L)

The diagnostic value of the analysis for the determination of bilirubin is the higher, the earlier it is performed and correctly evaluated, from the point of view of clarifying deviations from the norm.

The following fractions of pigment are distinguished:

  • Indirect (unbound) – a water-insoluble toxic compound that easily penetrates through plasma membranes. The synthesis is responsible for the reticulo-endothelial system (RES), where heme transformation occurs. Then the gall pimento combines with albumin and is transported to the liver.
  • Direct, neutralized in hepatocytes. In the form of stercobilin is excreted in feces.

Total bilirubin is the sum of the previous two, respectively. If it is within acceptable values, then further research to determine the level of individual fractions is impractical.

Hyperbilirubinemia is a concentration of B that exceeds the norm. With indicators of 36 μmol / L, yellowness of sclera and skin is manifested. A tenfold increase threatens human health and even human life.

Mass destruction of red blood cells increases the proportion of unconjugated pigment. The liver is not able to neutralize such an amount, therefore, the concentration of B in plasma increases.

These changes occur with hemolytic anemia (anemia) – pathologies in which the processes of formation and maturation of red blood cells are disrupted.

Provocateurs can be environmental factors, among which:

  • medications;
  • poisons
  • exposure;
  • diseases, for example, malaria.

Anemia can be congenital, then the activity of the enzyme system in red blood cells decreases or the cell membranes turn out to be defective.

Increased bilirubin in the blood is sometimes associated with insufficient intake of vitamin B12.

Hepatomegaly of the liver, signs of what this diagnosis means

Metabolism B is impaired in chronic liver diseases, alcoholic damage to hepatocytes as a result of which the pigment enters the blood. With Gilbert’s syndrome, a deficiency of glucuronyl transferase, an enzyme involved in pigment metabolism, is observed.

In connection with hemolytic anemia, the condition is accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • Tachycardia.
  • Lag in physical development in children.
  • Headache.
  • Fast fatiguability.
  • Fever.
  • Enlarged spleen.
  • Heaviness in the left hypochondrium after physical exertion.

Yellowness of the skin and mucous membranes develops gradually: from the sclera and oral cavity to the face, palms, feet and throughout the body. Its degree depends on the individual characteristics of a person, for example, in full stains less intense than thin ones. The following symptoms indicate liver pathologies:

  • Colorless or too light stools.
  • Dark urine.
  • Itching.
  • Yellowness
  • Bitterness in the mouth.
  • Vomiting.

Disturbed outflow of bile is a consequence of gallstone disease, tumor and inflammatory processes.

Bile pigment is toxic. The brain is especially sensitive to it. Other organs are able to function normally even in conditions of its high level. How long this activity will be depends on the degree of hyperbilirubinemia:

  1. Insignificant with indicators of 50–70 µmol / l. Not accompanied by toxic organ damage. Requires clarification of the reasons for the increase.
  2. Expressed (150-170). The danger is present, but it is uncritical. With prolonged existence, it causes poisoning of the body, which is unacceptable and should be quickly eliminated.
  3. Heavy (300). In an adult, this means that there is a pronounced intoxication that poses a threat to the patient’s life.
  4. Extremely heavy. Without medical assistance, a person dies.

The consequences of hyperbilirubinemia are:

  • Cholelithiasis.
  • Cholecystitis.
  • Liver failure.
  • Hypovitaminosis as a result of disorders in the digestive canal.

The first signs of increased bilirubin are a reason to visit a gastroenterologist. In case of blood diseases, the patient will receive a referral to a hematologist. The surgeon’s help may be needed if obstructive jaundice is the result of cholelithiasis.

But we must not forget that mild yellowness can be a sign of hypothyroidism or diabetes. Sometimes it is the result of consuming foods high in carotene.

If necessary, the infectious disease specialist will treat viral hepatitis, an oncologist with malignant neoplasms, and a hepatologist with liver diseases.

Hyperbilirubinemia is not an independent pathology requiring specific therapy. But icteric staining of the mucous membranes and skin is an occasion to see a doctor. Attempts to independently cope with the problem before clarifying the causes of high bilirubin are unacceptable.

Only a doctor after a timely examination will find out the etiology of the condition, make a diagnosis, prescribe an adequate treatment, sometimes a complicated operation. With toxic liver damage, infectious hepatitis, hospitalization and the introduction of detoxification compounds will be required.

If total bilirubin is increased, and the reason is associated with a violation of the outflow of bile, then the appropriate medications are prescribed:

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To eliminate toxins, absorbent agents are indicated:

In case of serious diseases of an infectious nature, antiviral formulations, as well as immunomodulators, will be needed. Antioxidants eliminate the damaging effects of toxins. Barbiturate-based drugs will lower B.

The intake of lipoic, ascorbic, folic acid, vitamins of group B for long courses will help restore the digestive canal.

The introduction of solutions of protein, Hemodez, glucose with the simultaneous administration of diuretic compositions allows you to accelerate the release of tissues from bilirubin and reduce its toxic effect. Any appointment is made only by a doctor.


Highly effective method that allows you to translate poisonous bilirubin in direct under the influence of various artificial light sources.

Procedures should be taken in strict accordance with the instructions for portable dichroic, fluorescent and other lamps (protect the eyes).

In the absence of equipment, it is useful to take sunbaths, preferably in the morning and evening for not 15 minutes. In the cold season, take walks in diffused sunlight.

Folk remedies

With a mild degree of hyperbilirubinemia that does not require urgent hospitalization, recipes of alternative medicine can be used. They are unable to cope with the problem on their own, but complement outpatient drug therapy.

To improve bile formation use yarrow, rosehip, chicory, and for the outflow – oregano, dandelion, chamomile, mint. Some herbs, such as milk thistle and tansy, all have these properties. It is useful to drink freshly prepared beetroot juice (a third of a glass before meals), as well as a decoction of calendula.

The liver will respond favorably to the recipe for tinctures from 1 tbsp. l dry birch leaves and 250 ml of boiling water. Soak for half an hour, drink at night. The composition will soothe and remove toxins from the liver, including free bilirubin.

According to the same recipe, a preparation based on corn stigmas is prepared. Take 2 times a day, 125 ml. Mint tea will quickly cleanse the liver of not only an adult, but also a child. You can drink for 2 months without a break.

Diet correction

The liver condition will improve if:

  • Eat fractionally, in small portions.
  • Refuse junk food.
  • Include foods high in pectin and fiber in the menu.
  • Drink more still water.
  • Minimize the amount of salt.
  • More often porridge.
  • Steam or boil.
  • Do not get involved in spicy, fatty dishes.

Reduced bilirubin products from the following list:

  • Herbal teas.
  • Vegetable, milk soups.
  • Lean meat.
  • Kefir, cottage cheese.
  • Egg white.

As for fruits, they must be ripe.


The level of bilirubin will remain within normal limits if:

  • Timely detect and treat anemia, alcohol poisoning, infectious diseases, liver pathology, as well as gall bladder.
  • Limit psycho-emotional, physical activity.
  • Eat rationally. Refuse alcohol, smoking.
  • Take medicines as prescribed by specialists, follow instructions, dosages.

Doctor’s opinion

High bilirubin is a sign of primary pathology. Seeking medical help will provide accurate diagnosis and effective comprehensive treatment.

Keep track of your child’s development. Compare its height, weight, body mass index with benchmarks developed by WHO experts .

Beginning: Indirect and direct bilirubin: metabolic features Brief information about bilirubin. Norm of bilirubin. How to correctly interpret the analysis result. The reason for increased bilirubin can be both in the liver and beyond. Classification of causes of increased bilirubin Preliminary diagnosis

What is bilirubin?

Bilirubin total elevated – what does it mean in an adult

It is clear that when you weaken the antitoxic function of the liver by using any substance that is not useful for it, this increases the risk that the liver cells do not have enough energy to neutralize all toxins.

Therefore, in principle, any medications can increase bilirubin, but it is noted that antibiotics are most. This is due to the fact that during the inflammatory reaction, many damaged cells are formed, which the body must get rid of over time. But when taking antibiotics, the endotoxins of the microbes they kill are also massively released into the bloodstream.

In addition, the metabolites of antibiotics themselves are unsafe for the liver cells through which they are excreted. Therefore, the more active and prolonged antibiotic therapy, the more carefully you need to protect the liver. Blood purification is prohibited in this case, since Zosterin ultra will reduce the effect of antibiotics. But Liver 48 can and should be used for a month, right in parallel with antibiotics. This will give the doctor the opportunity to conduct the course that he wants, and you – to survive it without compromising the general condition.

In addition, you can simultaneously eliminate the risk of damage to the hepatocytes by toxins absorbed from the intestines. Antibiotics always cause dysbiosis, which means an increase in intoxication and a load on the liver. Probiotics are always prescribed at the same time as antibiotics. So use those that really work – Unibacter and also for a month, rather than a decorative weekly course.

So you will not allow the liver to weaken with antibiotics, and therefore the likelihood that bilirubin does not increase with antibiotics is much higher.

Such products that would allow to lower or increase the level do not exist. All that is not good for the liver as a whole, then you can not. You need to organize meat food (primarily pork and beef), fatty, smoked, products with dyes, flavors, preservatives, spicy.

Sokolinsky System offers a 100% natural approach to liver support and blood purification, protection of nerve cells with high bilirubin

To remove neurotoxic compounds from the blood is not so difficult. To do this, the course of taking natural hemosorbent from pectin of sea grass of Zoster Zosterin ultra 60% has been successfully used. With Gilbert’s syndrome, it can be used in courses of 10 days every quarter. But it is clear that excess bilirubin enters the bloodstream every day, respectively, something needs to work directly in the place of its improper metabolism – affecting hepatocytes.

Such a natural remedy is the natural non-drug hepatoprotector Laver 48 (Margali). About which we constantly talk on the site by virtue of respect for the centennial history of this unique herbal formula. It is reasonable to use it with high bilirubin 4 times a year for a month. A day is enough to drink 1 capsule 2 times with food.

You will read in detail about the compositions, explanation of the mechanism of action, detailed patterns of use for Liver 48 and Zosterin ultra by downloading the booklet about our system of cleansing from toxins

It remains to maintain the nervous system so that the nerve cell membranes do not become exposed to excess bilirubin circulating in the blood. In fact, this is not so difficult due to the inclusion in the diet of natural substances that stabilize the lipid membranes of cells. For this, the Sokolinsky System produces high-quality omega3 acids – Megapolien and a complex of phospholipids – Lecithin UM.

In this case, there is no need to drink them constantly. You can alternate according to the scheme a month after a month or more – not every day. For example, in one month, you add 1 teaspoon of Lecithin UM to a salad or sour milk drink three to four times a week, and in the other you also remember to drink a Megapolien capsule several times a week.

Try to start by cleansing the body, and then adhere to this support strategy for 2-3 months and you will see that life is really easier: digestion is better and emotions are more stable, memory and attention are better, and fatigue is less. For women, the much healthier appearance of the skin and its better tone will also be of importance.

After childbirth, the baby’s blood cells are updated, due to the fact that during the first breath he first encounters so much oxygen and a fundamentally different type of breathing starts than in the mother’s stomach. The body must get rid of old cells. And the liver helps in this. If it works like a clock for a baby, then the so-called physiological jaundice passes in a few days on its own. If not, bilirubin is elevated and you will not be discharged for a long time from the hospital.

The Sokolinsky Center does not deal with treatment, and all the more so, we do not have natural remedies for babies. This example is given solely to draw your attention to the closest relationship – the need for liver support and the level of toxic pigments in the blood. If jaundice does not pass for a long time in the baby, then it means that your liver was not ready for pregnancy.

Do not make the mistake of “doing nothing” repeatedly – as soon as the baby grows up to a year, take care of your liver with the help of cleansing according to the method described above. If for some reason they stopped feeding earlier – immediately after that, support hepatocytes. If you feed the baby less than a year, then the liver can not be cleaned at this moment. But Lecithin UM and Megapolien is quite right to take. In addition to supporting your liver, this will positively affect the growth and development of the baby.

Of course, if there is an opportunity – always consult with a specialist.

What is bilirubin?

A healthy body contains a minimum of B, so there is no toxic effect on its part.

What is bilirubin?

Determination of the level of bilirubin in the blood is performed when a violation of the functioning of the liver and bile ducts, as well as anemia (anemia) is detected.

A high level of bilirubin is an important diagnostic indicator, indicating a number of serious pathologies. In addition, each of these pathologies requires the selection of certain treatment methods.

It is important not only to establish the fact of the presence of the disease, but also to differentiate it as quickly as possible. The prognosis of the outcome largely depends on how quickly the correct diagnosis was made.

First you need to understand what bilirubin is and where does it come from?

Bilirubin is a yellow-brown pigment that is formed as a result of the breakdown of proteins containing heme (hemoglobin in red blood cells, myoglobin and cytochrome). The pigment stains bile, urine and feces in an appropriate color.

The functions of bilirubin are not fully understood. According to the main hypothesis, it performs the function of the strongest antioxidant.

Its role is to inhibit the oxidation process, which are exposed to the natural products of human life and the nutrient components that enter the body with food.

It is believed that antioxidants can slow down the aging process by activating cell renewal processes.

The total pigment fraction is divided into direct and indirect bilirubin. Indirect fraction prevails in the blood (up to 96%) – rhombic crystals connected to simple protein molecules (albumin).

If sugar-containing substances (glucuronic acid) are added to the liver, direct (bound) bilirubin is formed, its concentration normally does not exceed 4% of the total fraction.

The direct form of bilirubin, in contrast to the indirect fraction, is soluble in water and can be excreted in the urine after filtration by the kidneys.

AgeValid Values
Total bilirubin, µmol / l
Newborns up to two days old55-200
From 2 to 7 days25-210
From 1 week to 1 month5-25
Older than 1 month5-20
Direct bilirubin, micromol / l
For all ages0-5

The value of the indirect fraction is determined by calculating by subtracting the value of the direct fraction from the total bilirubin content.

Hemoglobin breaks down to bilirubin in the cells of the reticuloendothelial tissue. You can visually observe the process during the transformation of the shade of subcutaneous bruising (bruises).

Up to 4 days, the affected area has a crimson blue or dark blue color. After 4-7 days, biliverdin and green verdoglobin are formed at the site of the bruise.

After 4 weeks, the bruising becomes dirty yellow due to the synthesis of bilirubin.

The breakdown products of hemoglobin (indirect fraction) enter the human systemic circulation. Further metabolism is realized in the liver and consists of 3 stages:

  • absorption of indirect fraction from blood by epithelial cells of the liver parenchyma;
  • binding of the indirect fraction to sugar-containing substances in the endoplasmic reticulum (EPS) of the cell;
  • isolation of direct bilirubin from EPS into bile.

It is noted that a large concentration of the indirect fraction has toxic properties.

Due to the high degree of affinity for organic compounds, the indirect fraction is able to dissolve in the lipid component of the cell membrane.

After penetrating the cell, it invades the mitochondria, disrupting the process of respiration and oxidative phosphorylation. In addition, the normal biosynthesis of peptide molecules and ion transport through the cell membrane fails.

The indirect fraction is able to penetrate the blood-brain barrier between the nervous and circulatory systems, inducing organic damage to the brain. Such serious pathologies explain the importance of the normal course of the process of transformation of an indirect fraction into a direct one.

The severity of symptoms directly depends on the degree of increase in total bilirubin in the blood.

The clinical picture with elevated bilirubin at the initial stage is characterized by the appearance of an icteric shade of the sclera of the eyes (jaundice).

Subsequently, the symptom spreads to the oral cavity, and with critical increases in pigment size – to the entire face, feet, palms and various parts of the body. Often, the affected areas are very itchy.

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It should be noted that a similar picture is also characteristic of metabolic disorders of carotene and excessive consumption of vegetables (tomatoes, carrots). However, in this case, the whites of the eyes are not stained.

What is bilirubin in a blood test: elevated, what does it mean, causes and treatment

What is bilirubin?

Medications are prescribed to normalize the process of excretion of bile, along with which bilirubin is also excreted. Means are also used to relieve symptoms of intoxication. Often, patients are prescribed activated carbon.

The use of drugs aimed at protecting the liver from harmful effects and preventing the occurrence of cirrhosis is shown. When diagnosing Gilbert syndrome and other disorders, treatment should be prescribed only by a specialist in accordance with the patient’s condition, type, form and degree of development of the disease.

Hepatoprotectors are used for infectious liver damage. Immunomodulatory, antibacterial and antiviral agents are also prescribed. Using traditional medicine recipes to normalize the level of bilirubin in the blood is strictly prohibited. This is due to the fact that there can be many causes for this condition and improper treatment will cause serious consequences.

Food should be frequent (5-6 times a day) and fractional, without overeating

A high bilirubin in the blood also requires a correction of the diet. Diet helps reduce the burden on the liver. Patients should primarily reduce the amount of salt consumed. Dishes are recommended to be cooked without it. It is allowed to use no more than 10 grams per day.

It is also necessary to completely eliminate the use of pickles, marinades, smoked meats, as well as canned meat and fish. Patients are prohibited from consuming fatty broths, mushrooms, spirits, sour berries and fruits. When cooking, do not use spices.

With increased bilirubin in the diet you need to enter:

  • Dairy products with a low percentage of fat.
  • Sweet juices.
  • Sugar and honey.
  • Lean meat.
  • Porridge on the water.
  • Vegetable oil.

It is important to observe the drinking regime, and to subject all products to heat treatment. An increased indicator of bilirubin in the blood is characterized by severe symptoms, which allows timely detection of a violation. It is important to establish the cause of this condition and conduct treatment.

  • Acute viral hepatitis (hepatitis A, B, hepatitis with infectious mononucleosis)
  • Chronic hepatitis (hepatitis C), autoimmune hepatitis
  • Bacterial hepatitis (brucellosis, leptospirosis)
  • Toxic (poisoning with toxic compounds, fungi), medicinal (taking hormonal contraceptives, NSAIDs, anti-TB drugs, anti-tumor drugs)
  • Pregnant jaundice
  • Liver tumors
  • Biliary Cirrhosis
  • Hereditary jaundice – Rotor, Dabin-Johnson syndrome

Diseases in which indirect bilirubin rises:

  • Congenital hemolytic anemia – spherocytic, non-spherocytic, sickle cell, thallasemia, Markyafavi-Michele disease
  • Acquired autoimmune hemolytic anemia – develop against the background of systemic lupus erythematosus (symptoms, treatment), rheumatoid arthritis, lymphocytic leukemia, lymphagranulomatosis (symptoms, treatment), etc.
  • Infectious diseases – typhoid fever, sepsis, malaria
  • Medicinal hemolytic anemia – provoked by the use of cephalosporins, insulin, aspirin, NSAIDs, chloramphenicol, penicillin, levofloxacin, etc.
  • Toxic hemolytic anemia – poisoning, insect bites, snakes, mushroom poisoning, lead, arsenic, copper salts (vitriol)
  • Syndromes of Gilbert, Krigler-Nayyar, Lucy-Driscola.
  • Red blood cell destruction (accelerated or increased)
  • Violation of the normal outflow of bile
  • Metabolic and excretion of bilirubin

High indirect bilirubin with hemolytic jaundice is due to increased decay of red blood cells (hemolysis), which can be a consequence of not only hereditary defects of the red blood cells themselves (sickle cell anemia, spherocytosis), but also a number of external causes, for example:

  • infections (malaria, sepsis, typhoid fever, mycoplasmosis);
  • poisoning with hemolytic poisons of various origins (pale toadstool toxins, mercury, lead, other snake venom);
  • blood transfusion that is incompatible by group or Rh factor;
  • malignant tumors, in particular, blood-forming tissue (leukemia, myeloma, and others);
  • massive hemorrhages (pulmonary infarction, extensive hematomas).

The following symptoms are characteristic of hemolytic jaundice:

  • lemon yellow staining of the skin and mucous membranes, eye sclera
  • pallor due to anemia due to increased destruction of red blood cells
  • pain in the left hypochondrium due to enlarged spleen
  • may increase body temperature
  • in feces and urine, a large amount of stero and urobilin is found, giving them a dark stain
  • against the background of a lack of oxygen in the tissues of the body, a person may have a heartbeat, headaches, increased fatigue

Subhepatic jaundice develops when conjugated bilirubin enters the bloodstream due to a violation of its outflow with bile, most often occurring with gallstone disease, acute and chronic pancreatitis, hepatic artery aneurysm, pancreatic or gall bladder cancer, and diverticulums of the duodenum. In this condition, there is a high direct bilirubin in the blood. The causes of this type of jaundice can be:

  • closure of the bile ducts with stone, tumor, parasites;
  • compression of the bile ducts from the outside, accompanying tumors of the gallbladder, head of the pancreas, an increase in lymph nodes;
  • inflammatory processes in the biliary tract, followed by their sclerosis and narrowing of the lumen;
  • congenital malformations or underdevelopment of the bile ducts.

For this type of hyperbilirubinemia (with stones in the gallbladder, cancer of the gall or pancreas), it is characteristic:

  • maximally icteric staining of the skin
  • most patients complain of skin itching, which results in scratching the skin
  • since the binding function of the liver in this case is not impaired, an increased amount of conjugated bilirubin will be detected in the blood
  • unlike other types of jaundice, feces will be acholic, that is, they will be almost white in color, due to the lack of stercobilin in them, and urine is dark in color
  • there are periodic pains in the right hypochondrium or an attack of such pain with hepatic colic
  • violation of the digestive tract – flatulence (causes, treatment), diarrhea, constipation, nausea, loss of appetite, belching

Metabolic and excretion of bilirubin

This violation is accompanied by its excessive accumulation and, as a result, jaundice can be hereditary – hereditary jaundice, or occur throughout life and complicate various diseases – acquired jaundice.

Disorders that occur at the hepatic stage of bilirubin metabolism (binding, transport in the liver cell and removal from it), cause hereditary jaundice:

  • Kriegler-Nayyar syndrome
  • Gilbert’s syndrome
  • Dabin-Johnson syndrome

Gilbert’s syndrome is more common than others – a benign course of hyperbilirubinemia with a favorable prognosis.

The reasons for the high bilirubin in the blood in this disease lie in the lack of an enzyme in the liver cell that ensures the binding of free bilirubin to glucuronic acid, so hyperbilirubinemia will be caused mainly by its unbound fraction.

The disease is hereditary and is accompanied by a defect in genes located on the second chromosome. The prevalence of Gilbert’s syndrome in the world varies. So, in Europeans it occurs in 3-5% of cases, while in Africa – in 36%, which is associated with a high frequency of occurrence of a characteristic genetic defect in them.

Often, the disease is asymptomatic or with episodes of jaundice of varying intensity, which occur against stress, excessive physical exertion, when taking alcohol. Given the benign course and favorable prognosis, specific treatment for such patients, as a rule, is not required.

Suprahepatic jaundice occurs when the amount of newly formed bilirubin is so great that even a 3-4-times increase in the intensity of its binding by the liver does not remove excess from the blood serum.

Hepatic or parenchymal jaundice occurs as a manifestation of various diseases, accompanied by damage to the liver parenchyma and bile capillaries, which entails a violation of the capture, conjugation and excretion of bilirubin, as well as its return to the blood from the bile ducts during cholestasis (bile congestion) inside the liver . This is one of the most frequently developing types of jaundice in which there is a high direct bilirubin.

Diseases accompanied by hepatic jaundice are numerous and diverse, however, this type of hyperbilirubinemia is most often observed with hepatitis and liver cirrhosis.

Hepatitis is a large group of inflammatory lesions of the liver that can be viral in nature or caused by non-infectious agents (drug hepatitis, autoimmune, alcohol).

In the acute course of the disease, the causative factor most often is a viral infection (hepatitis A, B, C, D, G), and manifestations include:

  • signs of general intoxication with increasing body temperature
  • general weakness
  • muscle and joint pain
  • in this case, pain in the right hypochondrium will indicate liver damage
  • icteric staining of the skin and mucous membranes
  • discoloration of feces and urine, as well as characteristic shifts in laboratory parameters

With the progression of the disease with the involvement of a significant amount of hepatic parenchyma, as well as with difficult outflow of bile, itching, bleeding, signs of brain damage in the form of characteristic hepatic encephalopathy, and, ultimately, the development of hepatic-renal failure, which threatens life and often causing the death of such patients.

Chronic hepatitis is quite common as a result of acute viral, drug and alcoholic liver damage. Their clinical manifestations are reduced to parenchymal jaundice and changes in the biochemical analysis of blood; with exacerbation, fever, arthralgia, as well as skin rashes are possible.

Liver cirrhosis – are severe changes with the loss of the normal histoarchitectonics of its parenchyma. In other words, a violation of the normal microscopic structure occurs: as a result of the death of hepatocytes, the hepatic lobules disappear, the orientation of the blood vessels and bile capillaries is disturbed, massive foci of proliferation of connective tissue appear in place of damaged and dead cells.

These processes make it impossible for the liver to perform the functions of binding and removing bilirubin from the body, as well as the processes of detoxification, the formation of various proteins and blood coagulation factors. Most often, cirrhosis completes its inflammatory lesions (hepatitis).

In addition to parenchymal jaundice, the clinical manifestations characteristic of cirrhosis are enlargement of the liver and spleen, skin itching, the appearance of fluid in the abdominal cavity (ascites), varicose veins of the esophagus, rectum, and anterior abdominal wall.

Over time, signs of liver failure increase, brain damage develops, blood coagulation decreases, and this is accompanied not only by skin rashes, but also by hemorrhages in internal organs and bleeding (stomach, nose, uterine), which are often life-threatening in nature.

How to reduce bilirubin?

Ways to combat hyperbilirubinemia depend on the causes that caused it, but if jaundice occurs, you should not self-medicate, but you should immediately consult a doctor. Since jaundice is only a symptom and treatment should first of all be aimed at eliminating its causes.

At high bilirubin numbers due to severe hemolysis of red blood cells, infusion therapy with the introduction of glucose, albumin, as well as plasmapheresis is indicated. With jaundice of newborns, phototherapy is very effective, in which irradiation of the skin helps to convert free toxic bilirubin into a bound, easily excreted from the body.

With non-conjugation hyperbilirubinemia, the administration of drugs that enhance the activity of liver enzymes, for example, phenobarbital, is effective.

In all cases, it should be remembered that jaundice, as a rule, is an indicator of serious disorders in the body, and therefore, timely clarification of its causes increases the likelihood of a favorable outcome and, possibly, a complete cure for the disease that caused it. Do not neglect a visit to a doctor even in the case of a slight yellow staining of the skin, sclera, because timely diagnosis and timely treatment can not only save the patient’s life, but also significantly improve its quality.

Bilirubin is different. Depending on the type – the degree of danger varies

– total – the total volume of bilirubin in blood plasma (direct indirect);

– indirect – one that does not dissolve in water and can be removed from the body only after “neutralization” in the liver. At the same time, the level of indirect bilirubin is not determined separately, but is calculated as the difference between general and direct.

– direct – one that is soluble in water and has already been processed in the liver.

Bilirubin is formed in the cells of the spleen, then enters the liver, where it is transformed from indirect to direct (water-soluble form) and excreted from the body along with bile and urine. It is he who gives our feces a typical brown color.

Total bilirubin – from 5,1 – 17

Direct bilirubin – from 1,7 – 5,1

Indirect – 3,4 – 15.

A low bilirubin level is not common, and can be an indicator of coronary heart disease, but a high bilirubin level is a more common situation that should make you be more attentive to your body.

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Svetlana Borszavich

General practitioner, cardiologist, with active work in therapy, gastroenterology, cardiology, rheumatology, immunology with allergology.
Fluent in general clinical methods for the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease, as well as electrocardiography, echocardiography, monitoring of cholera on an ECG and daily monitoring of blood pressure.
The treatment complex developed by the author significantly helps with cerebrovascular injuries and metabolic disorders in the brain and vascular diseases: hypertension and complications caused by diabetes.
The author is a member of the European Society of Therapists, a regular participant in scientific conferences and congresses in the field of cardiology and general medicine. She has repeatedly participated in a research program at a private university in Japan in the field of reconstructive medicine.