Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Bruised Spleen Overview

Another name for Bruised Spleen is Spleen Injury.

What is a spleen injury?
A person with a spleen injury has damage to the spleen. The spleen is a fragile organ that is located in the left upper part of the abdomen. The spleen removes old red blood cells from the bloodstream and produces white blood cells, which fight infection. Because the spleen contains many blood vessels, significant bleeding can occur inside the spleen after an injury. The most common causes of severe spleen injury are motor vehicle accidents and sports injuries.

What are the symptoms of a spleen injury?
Symptoms of a spleen injury include nausea, vomiting, left upper abdominal pain, left shoulder pain, chest pain, back pain, difficulty breathing, or fainting. A bruise may be present over the left upper abdomen, left chest, or left lower back.

How does the doctor treat a spleen injury?
Treatment for a spleen injury may include bed rest, intravenous fluids, or narcotic pain medication. Treatment for a severe spleen injury may include surgery to repair the spleen or surgery to remove the spleen.

Continue to Bruised Spleen Incidence

Last Updated: Jan 5, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Bruised Spleen References
  1. Gonzalez RP, Han M, Turk B, Luterman A. Screening for abdominal injury prior to emergent extra-abdominal trauma surgery: a prospective study. J Trauma. 2004 Oct;57(4):739-41. [15514526]
  2. Keller MS. Blunt injury to solid abdominal organs. Semin Pediatr Surg. 2004 May;13(2):106-11. [15362280]
  3. Poletti PA, Mirvis SE, Shanmuganathan K, Takada T, Killeen KL, Perlmutter D, Hahn J, Mermillod B. Blunt abdominal trauma patients: can organ injury be excluded without performing computed tomography? J Trauma. 2004 Nov;57(5):1072-81. [15580035]
  4. Sato M, Yoshii H. Reevaluation of ultrasonography for solid-organ injury in blunt abdominal trauma. J Ultrasound Med. 2004 Dec;23(12):1583-96. [1555730]
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