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Gilbert's Syndrome

What is Gilbert's Syndrome?

Gilbert's syndrome is a disorder that affects the way the liver processes bilirubin. Bilirubin results from the normal breakdown of red blood cells.

Gilbert's syndrome is a common cause of elevated blood levels of bilirubin in people with no other signs or symptoms of liver disease. In some cases, Gilbert's syndrome may cause jaundice.

Can Gilbert's Syndrome be Treated?

Gilbert's syndrome usually isn't serious and needs no treatment.

What are the Symptoms of Gilbert's Syndrome?

Usually there are no symptoms for Gilbert's syndrome. When symptoms do occur, the most common symptoms of are:

  • jaundice
  • abdominal pain
  • loss of appetite
  • fatigue
  • weakness after suffering an infection

What Causes Gilbert's Syndrome?

The exact cause of Gilbert's syndrome is unknown. However, researchers believe that Gilbert's syndrome may be caused by reduced activity of a particular enzyme. The reduced activity of the enzyme makes the liver less capable of processing bilirubin. Researchers do not know what causes the enzyme to function poorly.

How is Gilbert's Syndrome Diagnosed?

If your doctor believes you have Gilbert's syndrome, he will order blood tests. He will examine the blood for an increase in unconjugated bilirubin.

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