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Should You Be Worried About Bruising Easily?


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http://health.usnews.com/wellness/articles/2016-06-13/should-you-be-worried-about-bruising-easily

Here are seven facts about those black and blue marks.

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It's happened to the best of us: You wake up with a small bruise on your leg or arm, and no matter how hard you try to remember what caused it, the source remains a mystery. For some people, it's simply a result of clumsiness. For others, these marks appear more frequently – seemingly out of nowhere – and last longer because they tend to bruise more easily.

A bruise is basically a form of internal bleeding. Usually, it's from some sort of trauma that causes blood vessels, or capillaries, under your skin to tear. Blood from these vessels leaks into the surrounding tissues and clots, first turning the injured area red and then dark blue. Before a bruise completely heals, its color will continue to change from blue to yellow to brown as the body sends macrophages, a kind of white blood cell, to break down red blood cells and clear away the clot.

"It's pretty rare to have spontaneous bruising," says Dr. Dana Neutze, a family physician at the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill. "Sometimes the trauma is so minor you don't think of it as trauma." If you happen to bruise easily, it can take as little as a light bump into a table to cause a mark.

In rare instances, a bruise can be your body's way of telling you that something's wrong. Bruising is one of the most common symptoms that patients bring to their primary care physician, says Dr. Roy Silverstein, chairman of medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Division of Hematology and Oncology and spokesperson for the American Society of Hematology. Often, though, easy bruising is not a cause for concern. It may just be the way your particular body was built, for example, or a normal sign of getting older.

Here are seven things to know about bruising:

 

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