What causes pediatric gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding?

Updated: Dec 19, 2018
  • Author: Wayne Wolfram, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Robert K Minkes, MD, PhD  more...
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Answer

The causes of upper and lower gastrointestinal bleeding, according to age group, are summarized in the table below.

Table. Common Sources of Gastrointestinal Bleeding in Pediatrics (Open Table in a new window)

Age Group

Upper Gastrointestinal Bleeding

Lower Gastrointestinal Bleeding

Neonates

Hemorrhagic disease of the newborn

Swallowed maternal blood

Stress gastritis

Coagulopathy

Anal fissure

Necrotizing enterocolitis

Malrotation with volvulus

Infants aged 1 month to 1 year

Esophagitis

Gastritis

Anal fissure

Intussusception

Gangrenous bowel

Milk protein allergy

Infants aged 1-2 years

Peptic ulcer disease

Gastritis

Polyps

Meckel diverticulum

Children older than 2 years

Esophageal varices

Gastric varices

Polyps

Inflammatory bowel disease

Infectious diarrhea

Vascular lesions


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