What are the Common Symptoms of a Hemorrhage?

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  • Written By: Debra Durkee
  • Edited By: Daniel Lindley
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2019
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Symptoms of a hemorrhage can be difficult if not impossible to see. A hemorrhage occurs when there is internal bleeding somewhere in the body, whether in the brain, inside bodily tissues, or in the body cavities. Symptoms can depend on where in the body the bleeding occurs; for example, intracranial hemorrhages can manifest themselves in ways such as confusion and dizziness, while an abdominal hemorrhage can result in vomiting blood or rigidity in the stomach muscles.

Some symptoms of a hemorrhage occur almost no matter where the blood is beginning to leak. A severe hemorrhage generally decreases blood pressure, and can result in lightheadedness, dizziness, and weakness in the limbs. There may also be localized pain, loss of the ability to move, or similar symptoms as seen in stroke or shock victims, including numbness or a tingling sensation.


Internal bleeding often takes place as a result of injury or trauma to certain parts of the body, and symptoms of a hemorrhage can occur right after the injury or can take some time to manifest themselves. Abdominal hemorrhaging is one type that can take some time to reveal the symptoms; blood may drain into the stomach or intestines, where it may begin to build up. Symptoms such as vomiting blood or bloody bowel movements can indicate that the blood has been in the system for some time. If the hemorrhage has been present for a time, it is also possible that the blood shows up on the skin, and resembles bruising across the abdomen.

A brain hemorrhage or an extradural hemorrhage frequently manifests itself in symptoms revolving around the head. This can include sudden drowsiness, a desire to sleep, enlarged pupils accompanied by a weakness on the same side of the body, and confusion. A person can have difficulty performing tasks that were previously simple, such as reading, speaking, and doing things that require fine motor skills. Many of these symptoms can be difficult to diagnose because they are similar to those that occur in other conditions, such as a stroke.

When a hemorrhage occurs inside of a muscle, the severity of the bleeding can determine how long it takes for symptoms to manifest. If the body cannot repair the break on its own, blood will begin to build up within the muscle tissue and starve the cells of the muscle of the nutrients the blood carries. This results in sharp pains as well as difficulty in moving or controlling the muscles. Similar symptoms of a hemorrhage occur when there is internal bleeding into the joints.



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