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Doctor insights on: What Is Meant By A Black Or Tarry Stool

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What is meant by a black or tarry stool?

What is meant by a black or tarry stool?

Agree w Dr. Hemming: If stool is black, tarry and has a foul odor - this could be melena which is due to GI bleeding. Seek prompt medical attention if that the case. ...Read more

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Dr. Arthur Balin
319 doctors shared insights

Melena (Definition)

Melina is blood in the stool that is black, tarry, sticky, and smelly. The blood in melena comes from high up in the gastrointestinal tract, and gets partially digested which is why it changes to melena. Bright red blood comes from lower ...Read more


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Just been diagnosed with crohns disease, I have had black stools but they are not tarry they are quite loose as well, should I be worried?

Depends: Black stools can be caused by medications like iron or even some mesalamines. If your doctor is not concerned that it's a sign of upper GI bleeding, it may be due to the medication you're taking. ...Read more

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I am so confused about how bloody tarry stool looks like...compared to black stool. Aren't they the same thing?

I am so confused about how bloody tarry stool looks like...compared to black stool.  Aren't they the same thing?

Be cautious: If you have black stools and are not sure if these are tarry black, treat it as if it were black tarry stool and get a sample tested for blood. ...Read more

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I had abd pain 1 week ago lasting 3 days. Pain subsided. Today I had a formed black stool. Not tarry. What could this be. Dr has not called back yet.

I had abd pain 1 week ago lasting 3 days. Pain subsided. Today I had a formed black stool.  Not tarry. What could this be. Dr has not called back yet.

Peptic ulcer...: A peptic ulcer commonly causes upper abdominal pain and can bleed leading to black stool(s). Your doctor may want to start you on a acid suppressive medication like Prilosec (omeprazole) and/or order an endoscopy to try and diagnose the ulcer (if present). Good luck! ...Read more

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I have tarry black stools which looked like clotted blood. Can celiac disease be a cause?

I have tarry black stools which looked like clotted blood. Can celiac disease be a cause?

No: This is not a typical symptom of celiac disease. More common would be diarrhea, loose, watery stools, and failure to gain weight. Tarry stools is a symptom of intestinal bleeding. ...Read more

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What can cause black tarry stool with occasional sharp stomach cramps?

What can cause black tarry stool with occasional sharp stomach cramps?

Ulcer: Possible ulcer. Stop any Aspirin or motrin-like products and consult your doctor. May prescribe a proton pump inhibitor like Prilosec while awaiting referral to a GI specialist. ...Read more

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Had bowel cancer 2001. Have tarry black stools now endoscopy negative what now?

Had bowel cancer 2001. Have tarry black stools now
endoscopy negative what now?

Melena: What endoscopy did u have—colon? Esophagus/stomach? Do u take iron supplement? Pepto-bismol? Beets? Nsaids? Melena suggests digested blood from upper GI source, but many foods/meds/supplements can produce black stools. Doc may order ct/ MRI &/or bloodwork to check for cancer recurrence or other causes. If only sigmoid checked, need entire colon & esophagus/ stomach checked. ...Read more

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Feces (Definition)

Feces is the product of ...Read more