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What is Gilbert Syndrome?

Gilbert syndrome is an uncommon inherited cause of poor liver function due to the lack of a specific enzyme (glucuronyl transferase) that breaks down proteins in the liver, says Dr. Warwick Carter in his book The Complete Family Medical Guide. "There are usually no symptoms, but it may cause a dark complexion (mild jaundice) from a persistent excess level of bilirubin in the blood. Liver function blood tests are consistently abnormal and patients are more susceptible to other forms of liver damage (e.g. from excess alcohol).

"No treatment is normally necessary, but in selected cases medication can be given to trigger the activity of the missing enzymes. No cure is available, but usually there are no adverse effects suffered by the patient."

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