Mallory-Weiss Tear

A Mallory-Weiss tear in the lining of the lower part of the esophagus (tube that connects the mouth to the stomach) is caused by hard coughing or vomiting, or coughing or vomiting for a long time. This kind of tear can also be caused by epileptic convulsions or anything the causes a lot of pressure inside the abdomen.

The tear usually heals in a few days without treatment. Medications that stop stomach acid (like Prilosec or omeprazole) may be taken to help. If the lining continues to bleed, the blood can show up in the vomit or in the stool. An UPPER OR LOWER ENDOSCOPY may be needed to see how to treat and stop the bleeding.

Mallory-Weiss tears cause approximately 3-15% of all bleeding in adults. Children who have medical conditions like portal hypertension, liver cirrhosis, or severe gastroesophageal reflux disease can often have this type of bleeding; but it usually happens to older children and adolescents.