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Today in Health & Wellness
HEALTH CONDITIONS

Bruises

Overview
Risk Factors
Commonly Prescribed Drugs
Treatment and Management
Home Remedies
Doctors to Consult
Overview

Common Name

Pasa, lamog, bugbog (Fil.)

Bruises, medically called contusions, result when the capillaries or tiny blood vessels under the skin are damaged or burst, usually due to blunt force or trauma, and the blood leaks into the tissues under the skin. The leaked blood appears as a purplish or "black and blue" mark.

Symptoms
Risk Factors
  • Elderly. An older person is more prone to bruising since the skin loses its elasticity and becomes thinner with age.
  • Gender. Women bruise more easily because they have more subcutaneous fat. Blood leaks more easily in soft tissues.
  • Skin tone. Skin discoloration is more prominent for those with lighter complexions.
  • Diseases. Bruising may be due to more bleeding caused by disorders of the blood or Vitamin K deficiency.
  • Forces. The greater the force that the tissues encounter the greater the bruising.
  • Location and tissue type. Areas of the body which have greater vascularity and/or softer tissues will experience greater bleeding, and thus bruising, with blunt trauma.
  • If a person experiences: bruising that is unusually large or painful; bruises easily; abnormal bleeding in the eyes and nose; or blood in the urine or stool - see a doctor immediately. Unexplained bruising may be due to a serious condition such as a blood-clotting disorder or disease or other underlying conditions that require medical attention.
Commonly Prescribed Drugs
  • Acetaminophen

  • Indomethacin

  • Ketorolac

  • Ibuprofen
Treatment and Management
  • Use a cold compress or an ice pack to stop the bleeding from the damaged blood vessels for one to two days after the injury
  • Rest the injured area. Applying pressure or tension in the bruised area will only increase damage to the tissue. Re-injury should be prevented.
  • Elevate injured area such as bruised arms or legs.
  • After 24-48 hours from blunt trauma, apply heat on injured area to reduce muscle spasms that accompany bruising and is believed to help break up the clotting that has occurred under the skin
  • Take over the counter drugs for pain or swelling such acetaminophen or ibuprofen
  • If bruised skin is tender, hot and dry, it would be a good idea to apply moisturizing cream that has been cooled in the refrigerator
  • Wear loose clothing since tight clothes increase the tenderness of the bruise
  • Other therapies that have been found to increase the rate of recovery of patients with severe bruising are therapeutic ultrasound, heat therapy, whirlpool therapy, and electrotherapy.
Home Remedies

These include precautions that reduce the possibility of injury that can lead to bruising:

  • Refrain from drinking alcohol
  • Arrange furniture at home in a way that will result to less bumping or tripping. Consider buying furniture with round or soft edges.
  • Consider using carpets to decrease the likelihood of slipping on the bare floor. Carpets can also provide cushioning against falls
  • Use night lights
  • Put a rubber mat in the bathtub or bathroom floor to prevent slipping
  • Get rid of clutter that may result in injuries due to tripping
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