What does blood in the vomit from drinking alcohol indicate?


Quick Answer

Blood in the vomit can be indicative of alcohol-related conditions such as cirrhosis or alcohol hepatitis, or other serious health conditions such as erosion of the stomach lining, esophageal cancer or pancreatic cancer, according to Healthline. A person experiencing bloody vomit should always seek medical attention, and if the bleeding is heavy or occurs in conjunction with dizziness or difficulty breathing, he should call 911 immediately and should not attempt to drive himself to the hospital.

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Full Answer

A doctor may order imaging tests such as a CT scan, ultrasound or MRI to determine the cause of the problem, which could include organ damage or abnormal growths, explains Healthline. If the doctor suspects bleeding in the stomach, she may perform a procedure called an upper endoscopy to look inside the stomach and small intestine. If the cause of bleeding is an ulcer or internal injuries, surgery may be necessary. Patients who lose excessive amounts of blood may require blood transfusions. A doctor may prescribe medication to prevent further vomiting or provide IV fluid to rehydrate a patient's body.

Complications of vomiting blood include choking and anemia, reports Healthline. If the patient vomits an excessive amount of blood, he may experience shock. Symptoms of shock include dizziness when standing, rapid or shallow breathing, low output of urine, or skin that is cold and pale. Shock is a medical emergency that requires immediate care.

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