A bilirubin test is usually done to diagnose or monitor any liver disease.
When it's done:
A bilirubin test is often done in people who:
- Show symptoms of jaundice
- Have a history of drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
- Have symptoms suggestive of drug toxicity
- Have had exposure to the hepatitis virus
- Have symptoms such as anaemia, nausea or vomiting, dark coloured urine and/or abdominal pain or swelling
This test is used as a standard medical practice to determine bilirubin levels in newborn babies suffering from jaundice.
When to Avoid:
If you are taking some drugs that affect bilirubin levels, you should inform the doctor before the test.
How to prepare:
In adults, a blood sample is obtainedby injecting a needle into a vein in the arm In newborn babies, blood is collected using a heel stick that uses a small sharp blade to cut the skin on the baby’s heel and collect a few drops of blood in a small tube You may be required to fast for a few hours before the test is performed, although fasting requirements may be different in different laboratories