A yellowed appearance of the conjunctiva, which is the white part of the eye, is caused by an excess of bilirubin
in the blood, a yellow pigment produced by the breakdown of red blood cells
. This is a symptom
, more commonly known as jaundice
. The excess pigment is deposited in the skin, and not always very visible, mainly affecting darker skin. In the eyes, it is easier to observe due to the usually light color of the conjunctiva, and enables early diagnosis of jaundice and a more rapid treatment.