BACK TOTOP Browse A-ZSearchBrowse A-ZABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ0-9 E-mail FormEmail ResultsName:Email address:Recipients Name:Recipients address:Message: Print-FriendlyBookmarksbookmarks-menuPalenessSkin - pale or gray; PallorPaleness is an abnormal loss of color from normal skin or mucous membranes.Mucous membranesMucosa is moist tissue that lines certain parts of the inside of your body. It is in your: NoseMouthLungsUrinary and digestive tracts Glands in this...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Considerations Unless pale skin is accompanied by pale lips, tongue, palms of the hands, inside of the mouth, and lining of the eyes, it is probably not a serious condition and does not require treatment.General paleness affects the entire body. It is most easily seen on the face, lining of the eyes, inner mouth, and nails. Local paleness usually affects a single limb.How easily paleness is diagnosed varies with skin color and the thickness and amount of blood vessels in the tissue under the skin. Sometimes it is only a lightening of skin color. Paleness may be difficult to detect in a dark-skinned person and is detected only in the eye and mouth lining. Causes Paleness may be the result of decreased blood supply to the skin. It can also be due to decreased number of red blood cells (anemia). Paleness of the skin is not the same as loss of pigment from the skin. Paleness is related to blood flow in the skin rather than deposit of melanin in the skin.Paleness can be caused by:Anemia (blood loss, poor nutrition, or underlying disease) AnemiaAnemia is a condition in which the body does not have enough healthy red blood cells. Red blood cells provide oxygen to body tissues. Different type...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Blood lossBleeding is the loss of blood. Bleeding may be:Inside the body (internally) Outside the body (externally)Bleeding may occur:Inside the body when blo...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Problems with the circulatory system Shock ShockShock is a life-threatening condition that occurs when the body is not getting enough blood flow. Lack of blood flow means the cells and organs do n...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Fainting FaintingFainting is a brief loss of consciousness due to a drop in blood flow to the brain. The episode most often lasts less than a couple of minutes and y...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Frostbite FrostbiteFrostbite is damage to the skin and underlying tissues caused by extreme cold. Frostbite is the most common freezing injury.Read Article Now Book Mark Article Low blood sugar Low blood sugarLow blood sugar is a condition that occurs when the body's blood sugar (glucose) decreases and is too low. Blood sugar below 70 mg/dL (3. 9 mmol/L) i...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Chronic (long-term) diseases including infection and cancer ChronicChronic refers to something that continues over an extended period of time. A chronic condition is usually long-lasting and does not easily or quick...Read Article Now Book Mark Article CancerCancer is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body. Cancerous cells are also called malignant cells.Read Article Now Book Mark Article Certain medicines Certain vitamin deficiencies When to Contact a Medical Professional Call your health care provider or emergency number if a person suddenly develops generalized paleness. Emergency action may be needed to maintain proper blood circulation.Also call your provider if paleness is accompanied by shortness of breath, blood in the stool, or other unexplained symptoms. What to Expect at Your Office Visit Your provider will examine you and ask about your medical history and symptoms, including:Did the paleness develop suddenly? Did it happen after reminders of a traumatic event? Traumatic eventOne in four children experiences a traumatic event by the time they are 18 years old. Traumatic events can be life threatening and are bigger than w...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Are you pale all over or only in one part of the body? If so, where? What other symptoms do you have? For example, do you have pain, shortness of breath, blood in the stool, or are you vomiting blood? Shortness of breathBreathing difficulty may involve:Difficult breathing Uncomfortable breathingFeeling like you are not getting enough airRead Article Now Book Mark Article Blood in the stoolBlack or tarry stools with a foul smell are a sign of a problem in the upper digestive tract. It most often indicates that there is bleeding in the ...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Vomiting bloodVomiting blood is regurgitating (throwing up) contents of the stomach that contains blood. Vomited blood may appear bright red, dark red, or look lik...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Do you have a pale arm, hand, leg or foot, and cannot feel a pulse in the area? PulseThe pulse is the number of heartbeats per minute.Read Article Now Book Mark Article Tests that may be ordered include:Extremity arteriography Extremity arteriographyExtremity angiography is a test used to see the arteries in the hands, arms, feet, or legs. It is also called peripheral angiography. Angiography u...Read Article Now Book Mark Article CBC (complete blood count) CBCA complete blood count (CBC) test measures the following:The number of red blood cells (RBC count)The number of white blood cells (WBC count)The tota...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Blood differential Blood differentialThe blood differential test measures the percentage of each type of white blood cell (WBC) that you have in your blood. It also reveals if there are...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Thyroid function tests Thyroid function testsThyroid function tests are used to check whether your thyroid is working normally. The most common thyroid function tests are:Free T4 (the main thyro...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Colonoscopy to check for bleeding in the large intestine ColonoscopyA colonoscopy is an exam that views the inside of the colon (large intestine) and rectum, using a tool called a colonoscope. The colonoscope has a sm...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Treatment will depend on the cause of paleness.Open ReferencesReferencesSchwarzenberger K, Callen JP. Dermatologic manifestations in patients with systemic disease. In: Bolognia JL, Schaffer JV, Cerroni L, eds. Dermatology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 53.Seller RH, Symons AB. Skin problems. In: Seller RH, Symons AB, eds. Differential Diagnosis of Common Complaints. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 29.AllVideoImagesTogRelated Information Mucosa(Special Topic)Subcutaneous(Special Topic)Fainting(Symptoms)Shock(Injury)Low blood sugar(Condition)Anemia(Condition)Anemia(In-Depth) Review Date: 6/19/2021 Reviewed By: Ramin Fathi, MD, FAAD, Director, Phoenix Surgical Dermatology Group, Phoenix, AZ. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team. 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