What Is Intra-abdominal Hemorrhage?

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

  • Medical Editor: Dennis Lee, MD
    Dennis Lee, MD

    Dennis Lee, MD

    Dr. Lee was born in Shanghai, China, and received his college and medical training in the United States. He is fluent in English and three Chinese dialects. He graduated with chemistry departmental honors from Harvey Mudd College. He was appointed president of AOA society at UCLA School of Medicine. He underwent internal medicine residency and gastroenterology fellowship training at Cedars Sinai Medical Center.

Ask the experts

The coroner's report states the cause of my sister's death "Intra-abdominal hemorrhage" - what does this term mean please?

Doctor's response

"Intra-abdominal hemorrhage" means bleeding within the abdomen (intra-abdominal cavity). There are multiple causes of intra-abdominal hemorrhage. Some of the possible causes are trauma, ruptures of diseased blood vessels or organs, tumors, aneurysms, pancreatitis, ectopic pregnancy, and complications of surgical procedures. For example, liver cancers can bleed into the intra-abdominal cavity. Similarly, trauma causing a ruptured spleen can bleed into the intra-abdominal cavity.

There are also other potential causes of intra-abdominal bleeding. The coroner who performed the autopsy or your sister's physician should be able to more fully explain the reasons that the condition occurred.

Medically reviewed by John A. Daller, MD; American Board of Surgery with subspecialty certification in surgical critical care


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Reviewed on 7/10/2017