Fix it! The first step is to stabilize the patient, and then figure out the source of the bleeding. This is usually accomplished by endoscopy & colonoscopy. Sometimes tumors cause bleeding, and in that case, a biopsy will clarify what kind of tumor/cancer is responsible. With that information, a customized treatment plan is developed which may involve surgical removal of that bowel area.
Depends on cause. The blood breaks down partly in the intestine and by itself is not harmful. However, why there is bleeding is more important to ascertain and treat. Intestinal bleeding can cause anemia in addition to the pathology of the cause. Consult your doctor for evaluation.
Possibly. If associated with cramping or hard stool movement.
Many things. There are many causes of intestinal bleeding. Ulcers of the stomach or duodenum, bad gastritis, small intestinal disorders such as vascular malformation, crohn's disease, small bowel tumors, colon cancer, colon infections, ulcerative colitis, vascular lesions of the colon are some of the more common that I can think of. Also ulcers from medications, liver cirrhosis with enlarged esophageal veins.
Not necessarily. Intestinal bleeding can be small amounts slowly over time, which would have little or no symptoms. If there is faster intestinal bleeding, then weakness, anemia, vomiting of blood, or passing a lot of old dark blood in the bowel movements would be seen.
Stool. Typically you would have dark tarry stools (melena) or bright red bloody stools (hematochezia), however very slow bleeds can be astmptomatic.
Stool change. If you had significant intestinal bleeding your bowel movements would generally turn black and tarry. These are not generally solid but loose. Bleeding from your colon would generally result in passage of bright red blood or blood clots. If you have very slow bleeding it might not be noticeable and you may just develop anemia and/or fatigue.
Many things. Depending on where the bleeding is coming from (ie the upper GI tract, or the lower GI tract) it can be an ulcer, polyp, cancer, inflammation, or sometime the source is never found. All GI bleeding should be worked up, and you need to speak to your doctor.
Aspirin bleeding. Most bleeding is from minor erosions of the stomach lining, not the bowel.
My cardiologist suggested I take garlic caps, but I have anemia (probably from intestinal bleeding) is there a risk of increased bleeding from garlic?
Garlic. There is no evidence that taking garlic for anemia will help. Or will it help anything else. Not aware of it causing bleeding. Why are you anemic is the first question and would ask your GP about that. Taking aspirin for heart?
depends. If you have not taken pepto-bismol or other bismuth containing products, you need to see a GI doctor sooner rather than later. This could be due to a serious life threatening condition in your stomach. Don't delay.