The main issue in considering GI bleeding is to decide whether the patient is actually having GI bleeding. Several conditions can mimic GI bleeding. (See Table 3.) Ruling GI bleeding in or out may not be entirely straightforward. If an alternative diagnosis is not readily evident, the conservative approach is to assume that the patient is having GI bleeding until an EGD and colonoscopy can be performed.
John L. Westhoff; Kurtis R. Holt
March 1, 2004