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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 31326
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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Before I ask my question let me make clear that, other ...

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Before I ask my question let me make clear that, other than the symptoms I''m about to list I feel fine. Today I have felt a little gassy and had a bowl movement twice, the second time begin just a few minutes ago. Both time I had slight diarrhea and I noticed that my stool was very dark, almost black. It never had happened to be before so did a Google search and one site said that I could be bleeding internally. I don''t want to jump into a panic here, but naturally, this freaked me out. Is the site correct?   Do I need to cal 911? What should I do?


Do you have history of recurrent pain abdomen? Are you taking any medications? do you have any significant past medical or surgical illness? Is it possible for you to take your pulse and / or BP? Do you smoke or take alcohol?

Dr. Arun

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Reply to Dr. Arun Phophalia's Post: I do have a history of gastrointestinal issues and I've had some hormonal issues in relation to my period (been having "poopy problems" since I was little). My only problem, though, was with constipation and gas in relation to stomach aches and a greater need for fiber in my diet. However, I have not had much, if any, trouble for about 2 years. I'm not currently on any regular medications, the last thing I took was Advil 2 days ago for a headache. I had an endoscopy (not sure if thats the correct word) about a year ago, following up on my hormonal problems. I don't know how to take my pulse, but my heartbeat is not overly fast or erratic and my breathing is normal. I neither smoke nor drink.


With your history of previous abdominal / bowel issues and now a black stool there is a possibility of bleeding from the upper gastrointestinal tract. Advil too can aggravate an already existing ulcer. Since your heart beat is not fast and parameters look normal, chance is that there is a small ooze than a big bleed. Still any bleeding needs immediate attention of a physician and going to ER would be prudent. A physical examination, stool examination etc would be able to ascertain the exact cause.

Please feel free for your follow up questions.

Thanks for providing me so good detailed history.

Dr. Arun

Dr. Arun Phophalia and 3 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thank you very much for your help. I'm going to follow your advice, but I do have one more question: Is it possible that this was cause by my constipation in conjunction with a hemorrhoid?


A bleeding from the hemorrhoid will give a bright red blood, and yes, this can be aggravated by the constipation. A black stool occurs because of the bleeding from the upper gastrointestinal tract. Some medications like hematinic, pepto-bismol, some dietary products can give this color. But consulting a doctor is always safe.

Dr. Arun

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thank you very much for your help. I feel calmer now that you've helped me understand what's going on. (^_^) I'm going to talk to wake up my mother to discuss what to do next. I'll be sure to tell her what you said. I hope everything goes well for you in the future and once again thank you so much.

You are welcome.

Best wishes and kindest regards.

Dr. Arun