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Why is my bruising yellow?

Yarg's picture

By Yarg - Posted on 19 August 2012

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.


After my late entry into the All-WA bonnet surfing competition - or as you might know it - being hit by sleep driving woman in a Toyota, resulted in me getting what they called a "Simple" Collar bone fracture, now, about 6 days later I have this pale yellow coloured "bruising" apperaring on the front of my shoulder.

Anyone able to tell me why is this colour - and why there was no normal bruising there before?

just curious.


hawkeye's picture

Sorry to hear about the bingle. Sad

From my experience bruising goes through three colour stages.

1: Red. You're still bleeding into the impacted area. Possible hematoma forming. Watch carefully. Seek medical attention if persists more than a couple of days or swelling develops or feels "hot".
2: Black/blue. Old blood moving through tissues. Body just starting to bteak down and reabsorb.
3: Yellow. Body well into breaking down blood cells and reabsorbing them.

The yellow stage persists for awhile but then you?re back to normal.

Duckaducka's picture

is the breakdown product of red blood cells. It is the same pigment that is not cleared by the liver when you have liver disease - hence you are then generally "yellow" (jaundiced). Your red blood cells are continuously being made by your bone marrow and aging/damaged red cells are removed by your spleen then the pigment( bilirubin) is cleared by your liver. When local clearance is slow because of xs breakdown of red blood cells( i.e. bruising) you get local temporary "yellowing" of the skin due to xs bilirubin, which is then eventually cleared through the blood by the liver.


Burt de Ernie's picture


mxracer92's picture

your turning into one of the simpsons , if u lose a finger seek medical help asap

andyfev's picture

As richardchristie stated it's the bilirubin from red blood cell degeneration. This bruising, or contusion as known medically, will even turn light brown towards the end and can spread quite considerably beyond the initial area of injury (usually the armpit and chest wall in clavicular fractures). You didn't see this yellow bruise at time of injury or even a few days later as a large interstitial haematoma resulted from the force required to break your collarbone (clavicle). Once the body has dealt with this internal deep haematoma (deep purple to black colour) it can then focus healing the more peripheral soft-tissues closer to the skin... Also known as fatty tissue that contains a matrix of small capillaries that would have been damaged, also.

Hope this helps!

ADZA's picture

had the same thing when i broke my collarbone

hawkeye's picture

As did I.

Hey, we should start a club.

Wanna join? Evil

pharmaboy's picture

photo or it didnt happen.

Yep, mine just came out yesterday 7 day anniversary of the break, no purple or significant bruising first (like you usually get) never had it happen before - though usually my fractures are hidden by cast for the first number of weeks

Black Flash's picture

When it came down to my recent off! Made sure I got some cool pics too!
@pharmaboy.... What are you doing breaking bones..?

ADZA's picture


Black Flash's picture

There would be 5 members just on this thread alone.
You should start a broken bone poll... Just for fun...

pharmaboy's picture

One club for clavicals, one club for scaphoids

Downhill fractures only count .5 of a fracture, moto .1 of a fracture, if it was done during a race you can apply for presidency

hawkeye's picture

Looks like I've got dual membership then. If we count ribs individually, I think Black Flash qualifies for life presidency. Sticking out tongue

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