According to the NHS, jaundice is when your skin and the whites of your eyes turn yellow.
It can be a sign of something serious – such as liver disease – so if you spot any colour change it’s advised to get urgent medical help.
Jaundice is caused by the build-up in your body of a yellow substance called bilirubin and can be caused by a number of things, including liver disease.
According to the NHS, it can also be caused by Gallstones, pancreatitis, hepatitis and sickle cell disease.
“Jaundice is often associated with liver disorders ”
We spoke to Cheryl Lithgoe, a matron at Benenden Health, to find out more about the condition.
She told Daily Star Online: “Jaundice is often associated with liver disorders although it can be caused by other body dysfunctions i.e. spleen, blood.
“Jaundice is a common health issue for new-born babies and often present within 72 hours of birth – your midwife and Dr will be able to advise and manage this condition.
“The signs of mild to moderate jaundice are the known yellow tinge of the skin and the whites of the eyes, the higher the bilirubin level the more intense the skin’s colour change.”
She added: “The symptoms are secondary to the root cause of the problem and may be tiredness, abdominal pain, weight loss, dark urine or pale stools. It is also not abnormal to get excessive itching.
“Jaundice can often by diagnosed through the patient’s appearance and accompanying symptoms but to identify the cause of the jaundice the clinician may undertake a blood test, ultrasound or a CT scan.”
According to Cheryl, it’s not always possible to prevent jaundice, but the first step is to look after our liver health.
She continued: “We can help this vital organ through eating a balanced, healthy diet, exercising regularly, not consuming more than the recommended alcohol amount and not smoking.”
The NHS advises getting urgent medical help if you notice the skin or whites of your eyes turn yellow.
It’s important to stay on top of your eye health in general.
Dr Nigel Best, a Specsavers spokesperson, claims an eye test can reveal a lot about the general health of our bodies.
He told Daily Star Online: “If you experience any changes with your eyes – from vision to appearance to irritation – it’s important you visit your local opticians as soon as possible.
“We also recommend that everyone has a two year eye examination. This enables an optician to spot any potential conditions that are often symptomless or are not visible to the human eye.”
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