Alcohol, Bleeding and Black Diarrhea

Here are some common causes to Black Diarrhea you should know about. Alcohol can be the culprit, but not all the time.

Black diarrhea is a condition characterized by blood in the digestive tract which can be due to different reasons. When bleeding occurs in the food pipe or stomach, vomiting is not the result but the blood moves down the intestine and shows up in the stool as diarrhea. As it progresses down the digestive tract, it gets digested more due to which it gets darker. There should be a blood loss of 2 ounces in the digestive tract to come out as black diarrhea. It is commonly referred to as “black tarry stool” because it changes the color of one’s stool into black. The causes of black diarrhea depend upon the location from where the blood is coming from. The location of bleeding can be the nose or mouth. Black diarrhea that results from bleeding is known as melena and it can occur because of certain type of foods, drugs and toxins.


Some foods like dark colored fruits and vegetables such as blueberries, blackberries and beets can cause black diarrhea. Moreover, certain desserts like black licorice and black pudding also cause black diarrhea. Bloody meats can be the cause of it as well.

Minerals, Medicines and Toxins

Supplements for iron deficiency and other conditions associated with low iron, can lead to black diarrhea. Charcoal causes symptoms of black diarrhea as well. It is prescribed to treat toxin digestion because it forms a bond with some drugs in the GI tract. Maalox is a medication that causes black diarrhea. Lead poisoning that results because of lead paint is also one of the causes of black diarrhea.

Oral, Nasal and Esophageal Bleeding

Abrupt bleeding from the nasal or oral cavities can result in the nosebleeds being swallowed into the GI tract, leading to melena. Ulcers and inflammation in the esophagus that results from infections or acid reflux from the stomach can cause esophageal bleeding. Excessive alcohol intake causes tear in the esophagus. These tears within the esophagus are dangerous because they lead to sudden bleeding in the GI tract. It can lead to black diarrhea as well.

Stomach Bleeding

Ulcers cause bleeding in the stomach. Ulcers result from infections, stomach acid and cancers. A malformation of blood vessels that causes bleeding, known as Angiodysplasia, can lead to melena. Inflammation within the stomach, a condition known as Gastritis, can also be the cause of black diarrhea.

Small Intestine Bleeds

Ulcers can be developed within the small intestine especially in the duodenum which is the closest part of the intestine to the stomach. Helicobacter pylori bacteria causes infection which in turn causes duodenal ulcer. Meckel’s diverticulum is developed in the lower region of the small intestine. This develops because of growth of a normal, non-intestinal tissue in the intestine. This abnormal growth of stomach tissue causes the production of stomach acid within the intestine which causes ulcers and bleeding. Crohn’s disease is another inflammatory disease that can cause bleeds in the small intestine.

Large Intestine Bleeds

Bleeds from the large intestine can cause blood in the stool rather than black diarrhea. However, it can also be a cause of black diarrhea, especially when bleeding in the large intestine is slow and continuous. Slow bleeding in the large intestine can be because of cancer or angiodysplasia.

Author Bio:

Barry Boches & Associates, Attorney at Law offers superior legal advice surrounding the Waukegan, IL area.

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