In order to appreciate the value of the laboratory tests in the differential diagnosis of jaundice, it is necessary to check their results against the different types of icterus. This accounts for the need of a classification in keeping with recent advances in the knowledge of this important symptom.
Classification of jaundice has been repeatedly attempted, but I am going to discuss briefly only the four most widely used schemes. Van den Bergh1 divided jaundice in two groups: (1) mechanical and (2) dynamic, including in the first all forms depending on biliary obstruction and in the second every other variety. This classification has the disadvantage of grouping under the same heading, dynamic jaundice, processes not only pathogenetically different but representing completely opposed problems from the diagnostic and therapeutic points of view.
Probably the most suitable for general clinical use is the classification proposed by McNee.2 Cases of jaundice
DUCCI H. CONTRIBUTION OF THE LABORATORY TO THE DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS OF JAUNDICE. JAMA. 1947;135(11):694-698. doi:10.1001/jama.1947.02890110012004