Point of Care Ultrasound Diagnosis of Upper Gastrointestinal Bleeding

Cureus. 2017 Dec 17;9(12):e1956. doi: 10.7759/cureus.1956.


A 28-year-old male was brought to the emergency department by the Emergency medical services (EMS) after being found unconscious and unresponsive. Upon arrival, he was hypotensive, intubated with a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) 3T, without the signs of trauma or the evidence of bleeding. A focused assessment with sonography in trauma (FAST), point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) was performed, obscuring part of the spleen from the distended stomach, which was filled with the heterogeneous contents, with the internal movement being identified. This was found to be blood after orogastric (OG) tube was placed for suction. The bedside endoscopy confirmed active variceal bleeding. This case illustrates the potential utility of the ultrasound in detecting the upper gastrointestinal bleeding.

Keywords: bedside ultrasound; esophageal varices; focused assessment with sonography for trauma; gastric contents; gastric ultrasound; hypotension; pocus; point-of-care ultrasound; ultrasound; upper gastrointestinal bleed.

Publication types

  • Case Reports