The signs of bleeding in the digestive tract depend on the site and severity of bleeding.
Signs of bleeding in the upper digestive tract include
Signs of bleeding in the lower digestive tract include
Sudden, severe bleeding is called acute bleeding. If acute bleeding occurs, symptoms may include
A person with acute bleeding may go into shock, experiencing a rapid pulse, a drop in blood pressure, and difficulty producing urine.
Light bleeding that continues for a long time or starts and stops is called chronic bleeding. If bleeding is chronic, a person may notice that fatigue, lethargy, and shortness of breath develop over time. Chronic blood loss can also lead to anemia, a condition in which the blood’s iron-rich substance, hemoglobin, is diminished.
A person may not notice a small amount of bleeding in the digestive tract. This type of bleeding is called occult bleeding. Simple tests can detect occult blood in the stool.