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What Causes Black Stool In An Elderly Person?

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Posted on Mon, 20 Nov 2017
Question: I am female, 71, and have been having black stools for about four days.
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Answered by Dr. Indranil Ghosh (26 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Upper endoscopy required

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thanks for your query.

Black stools are suggestive of upper gastrointestinal bleeding, unless confounded by some drugs like iron. Sometimes endoscopy doesn't show anything and the symptoms get controlled spontaneously. The cause in these cases remain obscure.

Bleedinglon is usually reddish and hence colonoscopy is not a recommended investigation for black stools.

Before proceeding to upper endoscopy, your doc may get stool testing done, to confirm blood loss there.

Hope this helps.
Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
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Answered by
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Dr. Indranil Ghosh

Oncologist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 1703 Questions

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What Causes Black Stool In An Elderly Person?

Brief Answer: Upper endoscopy required Detailed Answer: Hi Thanks for your query. Black stools are suggestive of upper gastrointestinal bleeding, unless confounded by some drugs like iron. Sometimes endoscopy doesn't show anything and the symptoms get controlled spontaneously. The cause in these cases remain obscure. Bleedinglon is usually reddish and hence colonoscopy is not a recommended investigation for black stools. Before proceeding to upper endoscopy, your doc may get stool testing done, to confirm blood loss there. Hope this helps. Regards