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Internal bleeding: A serious injury that requires immediate care

Internal bleeding is a serious injury that requires immediate medical care. But there’s a problem: Since you can’t see this injury, it often goes undetected.

There are a variety of symptoms associated with internal bleeding, with the impact depending largely on the location of the injury. For example, if you have internal bleeding in your head, you may experience:

  • Weakness
  • Numbness
  • Severe headache
  • Change in hearing or vision
  • Loss of balance
  • Loss of consciousness

Diagnosing this medical concern requires a physical exam and medical tests, including but not always limited to an X-ray, MRI and CT scan.

What about treatment?

Should you be diagnosed with internal bleeding, the first thing your medical team will do is pinpoint the exact cause.

For a minor injury, symptom control, rest and monitoring may be all that you need in regards to treatment.

Conversely, with a more serious injury, surgery may be necessary to stop the bleeding, clean the area and protect against additional damage.

What to do if you suspect internal bleeding

If you have reason to suspect internal bleeding, such as after suffering a blow to the head, it’s critical to do the following:

  • Stop what you’re doing
  • Assess your injury
  • Administer first aid to stabilize symptoms
  • Call 911 or get a ride to a local hospital

Once you receive a diagnosis and have a treatment plan in place, you’ll know what comes next.

If you suffered your injury at work, share your diagnosis with your employer and learn more about the workers’ compensation system. You may want to file a claim so you can receive compensation as you recover.

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