What is Bilirubin Total?
It is usually ordered when you have signs or symptoms of liver damage, liver disease like jaundice, dark urine, nausea, vomiting; when you have evidence of bile duct blockage or hemolytic anemia. Sometimes, it is also ordered in newborns with jaundice.
Why is Bilirubin Total done?
- If you have signs or symptoms of liver disease like dark colored urine, jaundice, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, fatigue
- As a part of liver function test or routine health check up
- If you have a history of taking excess amounts of alcohol
- If you have been exposed to hepatitis causing virus
- If you have symptoms or signs of hemolytic anemia like pale skin, jaundice, splenomegaly
- In newborns, to monitor neonatal jaundice
Interpreting Bilirubin Total results
- Increased total bilirubin which is mainly unconjugated may be due to hemolytic anemia, transfusion reactions
- Increased total bilirubin which is mainly conjugated may be due to viral hepatitis, drug reactions, alcoholic liver disease, gall stones or any obstruction in the bile ducts
- Low levels of bilirubin are usually not a cause for concern and therefore not monitored