Visible bluish or purplish mark beneath the surface of unbroken skin, indicating burst blood vessels in deeper tissue layers. Bruises are usually caused by a blow or pressure, but they may occur spontaneously in elderly persons. The yellowish hue that becomes visible as a bruise heals comes from the disintegration and gradual absorption of blood.
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A bruise, also called a contusion or ecchymosis, is an injury to biological tissue in which the capillaries are damaged, allowing blood to seep into the surrounding tissue. It is usually caused by blunt impact. Bruises often induce pain but are not normally dangerous. Sometimes bruises can be serious, leading to other more life threatening forms of hematoma, or can be associated with serious injuries, including fractures and internal bleeding. The likelihood of bruising, and severity of it, increases as one ages, because elderly human skin becomes thinner and less elastic. Minor bruises may be easily recognized, in people with light skin color, by their characteristic blue or purple appearance (idiomatically described as "black and blue") in the days following the injury.
Bruises can be scored on a scale from 0-5 to categorize the severity and danger of the injury.
|Harm score||Severity level||Notes|
|0||Light bruise||No damage|
|1||Less than Moderate bruise||Little damage|
|2||Moderate bruise||Some damage|
|3||Serious bruise hello dolly||Dangerous|
|4||Extremely serious bruise||Dangerous|
|5||Critical bruise||Risk of death|
The harm score is determined by the extent and severity of the fractures to the organs and tissues causing the bruising, in turn depending on multiple factors. A contracted muscle will bruise more severely, as can the tissues being crushed against underlying bone. Capillaries vary in strength, stiffness and toughness, which can also vary by age and medical conditions.
Treatment for light bruises is minimal, including RICE, painkillers (particularly NSAIDs) and later in recovery, some light stretching exercises may be appropriate. If swelling is severe, swelling may be reduced by applying ice and / or by elevating the area. Rest and preventing re-injury is essential for faster recovery. Very gentle massage of the area may relieve pain and encourage blood flow, though pain may indicate the massage is exacerbating the injury.
Bones may be broken by similar impacts, tendons can be bruised and joints can be sprained or otherwise harmed in ways that impairs the functioning of the limbs. The symptoms and signs of these injuries may appear to be those of simple bruising. Severe injuries that cause difficulty in moving a limb, abdominal bruising and the feeling of liquid under the skin may indicate life-threatening injury and require the attention of a doctor.
If a severely bruised muscle is used too early before healing has occurred, bone tissue may form inside the muscle, causing permanent stiffness, pain and disability. Extremely severe bruises may take as long as a year to completely heal.