Gilbert's Syndrome Treatment Chicago IL

Should you worry about your GS? In Gilbert’s syndrome (GS), your liver loses some of its ability to eliminate bilirubin—a yellow pigment that results from the breakdown of red blood cells.

Arun Kumar Verma, MD
(773) 257-6542
135 S La Salle St
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Gov'T Med Coll, Punjabi Univ, Patiala, Punjab, India
Graduation Year: 1985

Data Provided by:
William Kosmala, MD
1259 W Cottage Pl
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Rush Med Coll Of Rush Univ, Chicago Il 60612
Graduation Year: 1999

Data Provided by:
Scott Rene Oosterveen, MD
933 W Van Buren St Apt 305
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Suny-Hlth Sci Ctr At Syracuse, Coll Of Med, Syracuse Ny 13210
Graduation Year: 1999

Data Provided by:
Ali Cyrus Banan, MD, PHD
(312) 942-8973
1725 W Harrison St Ste 206
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Graduation Year: 2007

Data Provided by:
Kenneth Sukwoo Hong, MD
1740 W Taylor St Dept Med
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Il Coll Of Med, Chicago Il 60680
Graduation Year: 1997

Data Provided by:
Patrick Charlebois, MD
Chicago, IL
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Mc Gill Univ, Fac Of Med, Montreal, Que, Canada
Graduation Year: 1996

Data Provided by:
Michelle Lipman, MD
(312) 563-3883
1125 W Harrison St Ste 206
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Graduation Year: 2007

Data Provided by:
Peter Duhee Han, MD
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Pa Sch Of Med, Philadelphia Pa 19104
Graduation Year: 1998

Data Provided by:
Thomas Joseph Layden, MD
840 S Wood St
Chicago, IL
Specialties
Gastroenterology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Loyola Univ Of Chicago Stritch Sch Of Med, Maywood Il 60153
Graduation Year: 1969

Data Provided by:
Herand Abcarian, MD
(312) 996-2061
840 S Wood M/C 958
Chicago, IL
Gender
Male
Languages
French, Persian (Farsi), Armenian
Education
Medical School: Teheran Univ, Fac Of Med, Teheran, Iran
Graduation Year: 1965
Hospital
Hospital: University Of Illinois At Chic, Chicago, Il

Data Provided by:
Data Provided by:

Ask the Doctor—Living with Gilbert's Syndrome

Provided by: 

By Robert Rountree, MD

Q After finding elevated bilirubin on a routine blood test, my doctor told me I had Gilbert’s syndrome, but it was nothing to worry about. Is that really true?

In Gilbert’s syndrome (GS), your liver loses some of its ability to eliminate bilirubin—a yellow pigment that results from the breakdown of red blood cells. A relatively common genetic condition, GS may affect as much as 10 to 20 percent of the population. Under normal conditions, the liver detoxifies bilirubin by combining it with a type of sugar called glucuronic acid in a process known as conjugation. The liver then releases the “conjugated” bilirubin into the bile ducts from whence it subsequently gets eliminated in the stool. For people with GS, the UGT1A1 enzyme that conjugates bilirubin works at only 20 to 70 percent of normal.

In a person with GS, situations that either increase the breakdown of red blood cells or overload the detoxifying ability of the liver can cause blood levels of “unconjugated” bilirubin to rise so high that the whites of her eyes will turn yellow—a condition called jaundice. This can occur with fasting, prolonged strenuous exercise, fatigue, surgery, infections, excessive alcohol intake, or menstruation.

Up until a few years ago, experts considered GS an innocuous condition, the only significant feature of which was abnormally high levels of unconjugated bilirubin on routine fasting blood tests. As it turns out, GS is not so benign: A significant percentage of people with this genetic abnormality also have an impaired ability to metabolize and excrete certain medications, including the pain-relieving drug acetaminophen (Tylenol) and a cancer chemotherapy agent called irinotecan. That makes them more susceptible to side effects, such as liver toxicity from acetaminophen or a severe drop in white blood cells from irinotecan. More recently, a groundbreaking study at the University of Washington in Seattle has shown that having a sluggish UGT1A1 enzyme can make it more difficult for people with the most severe form of GS to eliminate cancer-causing environmental toxins found in smoke, automotive exhaust, and charbroiled meat.

The study also reports another significant discovery, however: Eating a diet rich in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and watercress can increase the activity of the UGT1A1 enyzme. (Onions, citrus fruits, and legumes also increase activity of the UGT1A1 enzyme, but not quite at the level as crucifers.) This implies that people with GS are particularly susceptible to the beneficial, cancer-preventive properties of broccoli and its edible relatives. Based on this research, I would recommend that you minimize the use of acetaminophen and avoid grilled meats, cigarette smoke, and exhaust fumes from petrochemical fuels as much as possible. In addition, eat at least one full serving of cruciferous vegetables every day. Or, if you aren’t particularly fond of this vegetable family, tr...

Author: Robert Rountree, MD

Copyright 1999-2009 Natural Solutions: Vibrant Health, Balanced Living/Alternative Medicine/InnoVisi...

Local Events

Rain Fields world book signing tour.
Dates: 12/21/2014 – 12/21/2014
Location:
Chicago Chicago
View Details

Rain Fields world book signing tour.
Dates: 12/21/2014 – 12/21/2014
Location:
Chicago, IL (Chicago, IL) Chicago
View Details