Skin | Dermatology | Easy Bruising (Symptom)
A bruise is a discoloured area under the skin caused by leakage of blood from damaged capillaries (tiny blood vessels). A bruise is medically termed a contusion. When a bruise fades, it becomes green and brown as the body metabolizes the blood cells and bilirubin pigment in the skin. A bruise is best treated with local application of a cold pack immediately after injury. Easy bruising is common with age.
Although most bruises are harmless and go away without treatment, easy bruising can sometimes be a sign of a more serious problem. As you get older, several factors can contribute to easy bruising, including: aging capillaries - over time, the tissues supporting these vessels weaken, and capillary walls become more fragile and prone to rupture; thinning skin - with age, your skin becomes thinner and loses some of the protective fatty layer that helps cushion your blood vessels from injury. Excessive exposure to the sun accelerates this process.
Easy bruising can be symptomatic of medical conditions including autoimmune disorders, vitamin deficiencies, leukemia and other cancers, and blood clotting disorders. Clotting disorders are characterized by a failure of the blood to properly clot, indicating a deficiency in coagulation factors (substances in the blood that work together to stop bleeding). This can result in heavy or uncontrollable bleeding after injuries or trauma. Clotting disorders can be hereditary or due to medications, vitamin deficiency, or liver disease.