Diagnosis of Mallory-Weiss lesions. A common cause of upper gastrointestinal bleeding

Lancet. 1976 Sep 4;1(7984):483-4. doi: 10.1016/s0140-6736(76)90785-6.


Mallory-Weiss lesions were considered to be the source of bleeding 21 (13.4%) of 157 unselected patients admitted to a general medical unit because of suspected upper gastrointestinal haemorrhage over a period of 30 months. They represented 16.7% of the 126 patients in whom there was ultimately good evidence of upper gastrointestinal blood-loss. In the total series of 200 suspected bleeding episodes the incidence was 11.5%. It is suggested that endoscopy of the upper gastrointestinal tract, peformed as early as possible after resuscitation, enables the diagnosis of the Mallory-Weiss lesion to be made, shows that it is a relatively common source of haemorrhage, and establishes whether bleeding has stopped, thereby helping to identify patients who can be managed without transfusion and those who are likely to require surgery.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Endoscopy
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Hemorrhage / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mallory-Weiss Syndrome / complications
  • Mallory-Weiss Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Middle Aged
  • Time Factors