Managing a patient presenting to the emergency department with upper gastrointestinal bleeding
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Managing a patient presenting to the emergency department with upper gastrointestinal bleeding

Sandra Michelle Haigh Advanced clinical practitioner, emergency department, Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Doncaster, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To understand the classification of gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding

  • To appreciate the need for a prompt assessment of critically unwell patients who present with upper GI bleeding

  • To familiarise yourself with a care bundle that can be used for rapid assessment and management of acute upper GI bleeding

Upper gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding is a common presentation in emergency departments (EDs). This medical emergency has a mortality rate of up to 14%, particularly in men and older people. The most frequent cause of upper GI bleeding is peptic ulcer disease. Management has not changed significantly in the past 50 years and there is ongoing debate in the literature about the most effective treatment protocols. This article uses a case study of a patient who presented to an ED with upper GI bleeding caused by peptic ulcer disease to examine the evidence on treatment and management. The article also discusses a care bundle that has been developed for rapid assessment and management of patients with acute upper GI bleeding.

Emergency Nurse. doi: 10.7748/en.2022.e2120

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

Correspondence

sandie.haigh@nhs.net

Conflict of interest

None declared

Haigh SM (2022) Managing a patient presenting to the emergency department with upper gastrointestinal bleeding. Emergency Nurse. doi: 10.7748/en.2022.e2120

Published online: 25 January 2022

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