|Picture Credit: http://cheezburger.com/2496274176|
This one is a little more serious than others of my Random Research postings, but it wasn't until I was writing a scene that I realized I knew less about internal bleeding than I thought.
Don't get me wrong, I took biology classes in college--and I've seen my share of "ER" television shows--so I thought I knew at least some about this topic. But when it came time to describe what a character was going through, I realized I was a little rusty.
Thank heavens for Medicinenet and EMS World! In no time, I read up on the signs and symptoms of internal bleeding. Of course, it matters where in the body a person is bleeding. I specifically looked at the chest and abdominal cavities, but look at the links I provided above for more information.
Depending on the severity, internal bleeding in the abdominal cavity can be accompanied by:
- Shortness of Breath
- Decreased Blood Pressure
- Vomit that is either bright red or the color of coffee grounds
- Bowel movements that are bloody or black and tarry
Depending on the severity, internal bleeding in the chest can be accompanied by:
- Rib Fractures
- Difficulty Breathing
- Rapid Breathing
- Skin that is pale, cool, clammy, and blue
- Rapid Heartbeat
- Altered Mental Status
- Over-expansion of the chest wall
- Drop in pulse
I don't know about you, but these lists sure make me feel lucky that the worst internal bleeding I've ever had to complain about are a few bruises when I occasionally do something stupid!