What is Easy Bruising a Sign Of?

Reviewed on 2/16/2021

What is bruising?

Bruising is a type of injury that happens when blood vessels underneath the surface of the skin are damaged. Easy bruising may be a sign of alcohol abuse, vitamin deficiency, bleeding disorders and other conditions.
Bruising is a type of injury that happens when blood vessels underneath the surface of the skin are damaged. Easy bruising may be a sign of alcohol abuse, vitamin deficiency, bleeding disorders and other conditions.

Bruising is very common. Anytime you experience a minor injury or accident that damages the skin, it affects the blood vessels below the surface of your skin. This usually causes a bruise.

Anyone can experience a minor injury or accident that causes skin discoloration. Some people, including you, may be more prone to bruising than others. 

Easy bruising is different from regular bruising. Easy bruising occurs more frequently and in areas of the body where an injury is unlikely. 

What is easy bruising?

Bruising happens when you experience a minor injury or accident that damages the blood vessels beneath your skin. At first, the affected area of your skin turns red or purplish. As the healing process begins, the bruised area may turn brown, green or yellow. The area around the bruise may be swollen and painful. 

Anyone can experience a minor injury or accident that causes skin discoloration, but some people are more prone to bruising than others. Easy bruising is different from regular bruising because:

  • The bruise shows no signs of improvement after one week
  • The bruise is located on a part of your body that is unlikely to get injured
  • The bruise comes back 
  • The bruise is unusually large or you are unsure of how it happened 

Recognizing the signs and symptoms of easy bruising is important for treating it and ensuring that your body heals properly.
 

Signs and symptoms of easy bruising

There are many different signs and symptoms of easy bruising that make it different from other types of bruising. It’s important to talk to your doctor about any symptoms you might be experiencing. 

If your doctor mentions a contusion, keep in mind that this is just another word for a bruise. Here are the most common symptoms associated with easy bruising. 

Frequent bruising

When you have easy bruising you may experience frequent, large bruises that may appear for no known reason. They may also occur in unusual areas of your body such as your face, back, or rear end. 

Multiple bruises

You may experience several bruises in different places on your body when you have easy bruising. You may have trouble remembering where they came from. 

Bruising that doesn’t heal

When you have easy bruising you may experience large bruises that take longer than the average of one week to heal. These bruises may also reappear without a reason.

Significant bleeding

You may have a history of significant bleeding or bruising after surgical procedures. This may indicate that your easy bruising is a symptom of some kind of bleeding disorder.

If you notice any of these signs, you may have easy bruising. You may want to talk with your healthcare provider about the best treatment options available. 

Causes of easy bruising

Easy bruising may be a sign of a more serious underlying condition. Here are some of the most common causes for easy bruising.

Alcohol abuse

Liver damage typically results from a serious case of alcoholism. This causes your body to struggle to produce blood clots. As a result, you may experience easy bruising. 

Bleeding disorders

Some bleeding disorders can cause a person’s blood to stop clotting or clot too slowly. Blood clots turn from a liquid to a gel and help the body prevent losing too much blood. 

If you have a bleeding disorder, the broken blood vessels beneath your skin may have trouble clotting, causing easy bruising.

Vitamin deficiency

Vitamins play an important role in helping your body to heal and your blood to clot. If you have low levels of certain vitamins in your body, you will be more at risk of developing easy bruising.

Vasculitis

Vasculitis is a condition that causes inflamed blood vessels. When blood vessels are enlarged or inflamed under your skin, this makes your body more susceptible to easy bruising. 

Cancer

Certain cancers that affect your blood or bloodstream can cause easy bruising. Many bruises like this are highly treatable and your symptoms can be managed with the right medical oversight. 

Certain medications

Certain types of medications can lead to dehydration. This lack of water in your system can prevent your body from healing as effectively as it should. 

These medications include:

  • Blood thinners, which prevent blood clots 
  • Herbal remedies like ginger 
  • Corticosteroids that reduce inflammation 
  • Antidepressants that treat different mental conditions

Diagnosis for easy bruising

Only a licensed healthcare professional can diagnose what medical condition is causing your easy bruising.

Your doctor may be able to diagnose easy bruising with a physical exam. They’ll ask you questions about your family history and whether you’ve inherited a blood disorder.

Your doctor will also ask whether you’ve experienced nose bleeds and if you’ve ever experienced above average bleeding after a surgical procedure. They may also want to know of any medications or supplements you have been taking.


 

Treatment for easy bruising

Your doctor may treat your easy bruising with medication. The type of medicine and frequency that you need to take it depends on your unique circumstances.

They may recommend some at home solutions to help prevent easy bruising as well. This could include things like improving the lighting in your home, avoiding clutter, and making sure there is nothing in the way when you walk.

Your doctor may also consider ordering additional tests to determine the underlying cause of your bruising. 

They may ask you to do a blood test so they can examine your blood in the lab and see if there are any abnormalities.

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References
SOURCES:

American Family Physician: "Easy Bruising and Bleeding."

Cleveland Clinic: "Easy Bruising."

Mayo Clinic: "Easy Bruising."

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