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Children's Health

Blood odor

07/03/2007

Question:

My sister-in-law told me that every time her 5 year old daughter bleeds by either her nose or some how hurting her self her blood smells really bad. So bad sometimes that she has to wash her daughters clothes twice just to get the smell out. She says it is a very strong metal smell. Sometimes when her daughter has nose bleeds small clots of blood come out and then she is fine. What could the cause of this be? Should she take her to see a doctor or not? I would like it if you e-mailed be back at this address.

Answer:

It is very hard to determine if your sister in law is just very sensitive to the smell of blood (which is most likely) or if there is another explanation.  If your niece is healthy in all other respects, that is likely reassuring, if you are at all concerned about her health then she should be see by her primary care provider.

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Response by:

Michael Spigarelli, MD, PhD
Formerly, Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Internal Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati