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What causes bleeding in the esophagus?

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If the bleeding is in your esophagus (the tube that connects your mouth to your stomach), causes can include:

  • Esophagitis and gastroesophageal reflux. Stomach acid that returns, or "refluxes," back into the esophagus from the stomach can cause irritation and inflammation of the esophagus (esophagitis) that may lead to bleeding.
  • Varices. These are abnormally enlarged veins usually located at the lower end of the esophagus or the upper stomach. They may break open and bleed. Cirrhosis of the liver is the most common cause of esophageal varices.
  • Mallory-Weiss tear. This is a tear in the lining of the esophagus. It’s usually caused by severe vomiting. It can also happen because of things that increase pressure in your belly, such as coughing, hiccupping, or childbirth.

SOURCES: 

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. 

National Institutes of Health.

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on February 5, 2020

SOURCES: 

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. 

National Institutes of Health.

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on February 5, 2020

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