Haemorrhage(bleeding) can be defined as an escape of blood from the blood-vessels. Any type of blood-vessel may be involved. Haemorrage can be internal or external.
CAUSES OF HAEMORRHAGE
The following below can lead or cause Haemorrhage. They are:
- Disease of the blood-vessel wall. This may be caused by infection or malignancy.
- Direct injury to the blood-vessel wall as a result of a wound or surgical intervention.
- Disease of the blood itself. For example haemophilia. Haemophilia is a condition characterised by a delay in the coagulation time of blood. It is due to lack of a specific factor in the blood which is necessary for satisfactory clotting. This factor is known as the antihaemophilic factor.
Haemorrhage can be classified in several or different ways; which include:
- According to the time it occurs
- According to its situation
- According to its source
SITUATION OF HAEMORRHAGE
There are about two major situations of haemorrhage. They are:
In this case, the blood escapes from the blood-vessel on to the surface of the body and can be seen.
Internal Or Concealed Haemorrhage
This type of haemorrhage occurs as a result of blood escape from the blood-vessel into a cavity or organ of the body, or into the tissues. The simplest example of this type of haemorrhage is a bruise or haematoma. It is possible for an internal haemorrhage to eventually become visible. For example in bleeding from the alimentary tract,the person may eventually vomit up the blood.
SOURCES OF HAEMORRHAGE
Here, different types of blood-vessel may be involved
If an artery is severed, the blood will be:
- Spurting from the wound. Each spurt coincides with the heart beat.
- Bright red in colour. This is due to the presence of oxygen in the blood.
- Escaping from that part of the wound nearest to the heart.
- Escaping from the wound under great pressure
If a vein is severed, the blood will be:
- Flowing from the wound in a steady stream and will not be under great pressure.
- Dark red in colour. This is due to the small amount of oxygen present in the blood.
- Escaping from the part of the wound farthest from the heart.
This occurs in superficial wounds. For example, in a graze and the blood will be:
- Neither bright red nor dark red in colour.
- Oozing from the wound.
- Welling up from all over the wound
It is very important to know that in large lacerated wounds, all types of blood-vessels may be involved.
TIME OF HAEMORRHAGE
Haemorrhage can occur at the time of injury or later on.
This occurs at the time of the injury or operation or when the blood-vessel has been damaged by disease.
It is important to appreciate that up to twenty-four hours after an injury is sustained or operation, bleeding may commence again. This bleeding is due to the reaction of the body. If there has been a haemorrhage, nature imploys three agencies to prevent serious loss of blood as follows:
- The blood-vessel walls turn in to hold the clot in position and prevent further loss.
- The blood pressure is lowered, therefore there is a diminished flow of blood to the part.
- A blood clot forms and corks the blood -vessel thus limiting further loss of blood.