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Vomiting or Coughing Blood

Vomiting or Coughing Blood

Vomiting Blood

Vomiting blood (hematemasis) is caused when there is bleeding from the upper gastrointestinal tract (mouth, esophagus, stomach, or small intestine). If is has mixed with acid from the stomach, the blood may appear dark and granular much like coffee grounds. Hematemasis may also occur following a significant nosebleed.

Treatment

A gastrointestinal specialist should evaluate even small amounts of vomited blood, as this may be a sign that a significant bleed is coming soon. Dizziness, lightheadedness, confusion, or white-ashen skin (pallor) may signify that a substantial amount of blood has been lost (perhaps a lot more than witnessed) and we recommend medical attention.

Coughing Blood

The medical term for coughing blood from the lungs is hemoptysis. Scant amounts of blood mixed with expectorated mucous may occur with pneumonia or bad cases of bronchitis. Otherwise, hemoptysis can be a sign of serious lung disease. As with many other types of internal bleeding, a small amount of expelled blood may be a warning that severe bleeding is impending.

Treatment

We recommend that a doctor evaluate all hemoptysis that is not associated with a known lung infection.

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