Black Stools

Black stools are mostly due to consuming dark-colored food. But sometimes, bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract due to ulcers, cancer, or injury, can result in black stools. The other cause includes bowel ischemia, varices, and vascular malformation. Hemorrhoids or IBD (inflammatory bowel disease) can also result in black or bloody stools.

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Why is there frequent change in the color of the stools?

Query: Hi doctor, I am a 36-year-old male. My height is 5'7," and my weight is 128 lbs. I recently consulted you for a burning sensation in the lower right abdomen. Not sure if it is the intestine. Today I noticed a dark red patch in the stool. I am trying to meet a gastroenterologist here in person. Can ...  Read Full »

Dr. Ajeet Kumar Lohana

Medical Gastroenterologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to I have seen the photo of stools you attached (attachments removed to protect the patient's identity), which has some maroonish color impression over one side. Do you think it is blood? Since blood usually washes away and turns the color of the water red. I see this...  Read Full »

What do black stools in children indicate?

Query: Hi doctor, My son is in a lot of pain. He had jaundice when he was born and was not feeding due to a disorganized feeding pattern and ended up with a nasogastric tube for eight weeks. He is eight months old, has severe reflux, has an allergy to cow's milk, and I have been waiting to see a gastroent...  Read Full »

Dr. M.l.kothari


Answer: Hi, Welcome to Your son is 8 months old. According to me, stop milk from 8 AM to 8 PM and give a semi-solid diet and from 8 PM to 8 AM give mother milk or formula milk. Cow milk is not given before one year. Blood in stool means cow milk protein allergy (if given in any form) so sto...  Read Full »

How to treat loss of appetite with stomach pain, vomiting, and black stools?

Query: Hello doctor, I have a loss of appetite, and I did not eat properly. I took only bananas for three days. Then, I had vomiting and stomach pains. I started eating, but my stomach has been continuously growling, and still in a lot of pain. I passed stools the other day, and it was black. It was a kin...  Read Full »

Dr. Anshul Varshney

Criticalcare Physician, Diabetologist, General Medicine Physician, Internal Medicine Physician, Medical Gastroenterologist, Nephrologist, Pulmonologist, Rheumatologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to I have read your query in detail and understand your concern. It seems you are suffering from acid peptic disease/ acid reflux disease. If you have any hunger pains and fullness of the stomach or gaseous distension of the abdomen after taking meals, you should go...  Read Full »

Do laxatives give you stomach cramps?

Query: Hi doctor,I have been dealing with this issue for a couple of months. It all began after taking a senna leaf, which is a laxative. I should also want to mention that I had a thin stool for some time, but now it comes and goes. In the beginning, I also had a dark-colored stool, but that is no longer ...  Read Full »

Dr. Ajeet Kumar Lohana

Medical Gastroenterologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to The senna is used in treatment for constipation. They are irritant laxatives, meaning they irritate the gut, cause cramps, and thus pass stools. So cramping, diarrhea, bloating are common side effects. However, they usually do not last for more than three days of the...  Read Full »

Why is there abdominal pain with bloating soon after having food?

Query: Hello doctor, I am having abdominal pain due to gas for two to three days after having food. It happens mainly in the morning and evening after food. Pain is severe, so I had an Unienzyme to get some comfort. Could you kindly prescribe some medicine for this? Thank you.  Read Full »

Dr. Nagaraj Patil

General Medicine Physician, General Practitioner, Internal Medicine Physician, Diabetologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to Can you please tell me about your symptoms in a bit in detail? Did this pain start suddenly or gradually? Did this pain felt in the back (radiating to back)? Is there any dark coloration of stools? Did you pass any blood in stools? Is there associated vomiting...  Read Full »

What causes bloody diarrhea and vomiting?

Query: Hi doctor, I am an 18-year-old female with a height of 5.3 feet and a weight of 170 lbs. Sudden onset makes me feel tired and unmotivated. Since I have an ovarian cyst, I took Drospirenone and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets (birth control). I recently stopped taking Abilify 10 mg and Prozac 20 mg. I als...  Read Full »

Dr. Sugreev Singh

Internal Medicine Physician, General Medicine Physician

Answer: Hi, Welcome to Thank you for the detailed history, and I understand your concern. As far as I understand, all these started with your medications and supplements and smoking. Due to that, it leads to ulcers or tears in the stomach or food canal. Those ulcers are causing bleeding and bl...  Read Full »

My 3.6 year old daughter has stomach pain and loose stools. Please help.

Query: Hello doctor, I have a 3.6 years old daughter, who weighs 10.5 kg. She is very thin and not a foodie. She is hyperactive when she is well. Sometimes, she complains of pain in the abdomen. It is going on from 1 to 2 months. The doctor advised getting an ultrasonography. She has been complaining o...  Read Full »

Dr. Ashish Jayanand Chandwadkar

General Medicine Physician, Internal Medicine Physician, Family Physician, General Practitioner

Answer: Hello, Welcome to I went through the detailed history of your child and the attached reports (attachment removed to protect patient identity) too. Most of the findings in the reports seem normal. Except some like ESR (erythrocyte sedimentation rate), lymphocytes, CRP (c-reactive protei...  Read Full »

I have nausea, black stools, belly pain and gas. What could it be?

Query: Hello doctor,I am a female, 58, 5'10", 239lbs. I am having nausea every morning. It comes and goes during the day. I also have black stools, belly pain, and gas. I am on Lexapro 10 mg, Pramipexole 3 mg, Lamotrigine 25 mg twice daily and 200 mg once, Meloxicam 15 mg, Metformin 500 mg, Gabapentin 300 ...  Read Full »

Dr. Anantha Narayanan.n

Family Physician, General Practitioner

Answer: Hello, Welcome to Your symptoms are suggestive of upper gastrointestinal intestinal bleed. Please stop Meloxicam 15 mg tablet immediately. I suggest you take proton pump inhibitor medication like Omeprazole 40 mg tablet straightaway and take preferably cold water. Please check with a...  Read Full »

I vomit after eating and have an upset stomach with black stool. Why?

Query: Hello doctor, I vomit after eating and have an upset stomach too. I also have a black stool. What could be the causes of these?  Read Full »

Dr. Ajeet Kumar Lohana

Medical Gastroenterologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to This seems to be peptic ulcer within stomach. The pain of stomach ulcer worsen after taking meals. Do you have a previous history of peptic ulcers? The black stools are suggestive of ongoing bleeding from peptic ulcer; the bleeding may be small to cause change in the...  Read Full »

Does black stools suggest liver failure in alcoholic cirrhosis?

Query: Hello doctor, I am 59 years old. I was diagnosed with hepatitis C alcoholic cirrhosis, acute pancreatitis and that was almost two years. I am currently taking Levothyroxine 50 mg once daily, Labetalol Hydrochloride 100 mg once daily, Lisinopril 20 mg once daily. I was in the hospital at first to st...  Read Full »

Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy

Family Physician, General Practitioner

Answer: Hello, Welcome to Black stools are indicative of acute gastrointestinal hemorrhage. Melena or black stools can also turn into a medical emergency if a lot of blood is lost and hence my sincere advice to you would be to go see a doctor as soon as possible. This does not signify liver f...  Read Full »

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Disclaimer: All health Q&As published on this website are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek the advice from your physician or other qualified health-care providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website.