Hematocrit Blood Test Topic Guide
Hematocrit (Blood Test): A hematocrit blood test measures the portion of red blood cells in the blood. Normal values of hematocrit in the blood vary according to age, sex, pregnancy, altitude where a person lives, and vary slightly between testing methods. Causes of low hematocrit levels in the blood may be due to bleeding disorders, destruction of red blood cells, cancer, anemia, and overhydration. High hematocrit levels may be caused by dehydration, smoking, pulmonary conditions, COPD, sleep apnea, and polycythemia vera.
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Gastrointestinal Bleeding (GI) Gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding either comes from the upper GI or lower GI tract. Upper GI bleeding can be caused by ulcers, gastritis, varices, cancer, or inflammation. Lower GI bleeding is caused by diverticulitis, cancers, IBD, infection, polyps, hemorrhoids, and anal fissures. Symptoms of GI bleeding include fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath, abdominal pain, vomiting blood, rectal bleeding, anemia, or a pale appearance. Treatment of GI bleeding depends on the cause.