We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Article |

Is It Bile or Bilirubin?

John M. Eiband, M.D.; Herbert L. Fred, M.D.
Arch Intern Med. 1963;111(4):405-406. doi:10.1001/archinte.1963.03620280005002.
Text Size: A A A
Published online


From time to time there appear articles which make a plea for greater specificity in speaking and writing.1,2 This is as it should be, since precision in the communication of knowledge is important to the progress of science. In line with this thesis, we shall point out reasons for abandoning the inappropriate use of "bile in the urine," a term long entrenched in medical tradition.

Exactly how or when this phrase became common jargon is not certain. As early as 400 B.C. Hippocrates described jaundice and mentioned dark urine.3 In the 13th Century John Actuarius wrote that discolored urine resulted from admixture with bile, or, more rarely, with blood.4 Richard Bright, in an excellent treatise on jaundice published in 1836, referred to the urine of his patients as being "highly tinged with bile" or "loaded with bile."5 In 1845 Scherer isolated a crude preparation of biliverdin


Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

First Page Preview

View Large
First page PDF preview





Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.