Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Purpura
Purpura is sudden, severe bruising that may be localized, regional,
or widespread and that occurs without an injury. People who develop purpura
often have signs of illness, such as a fever, weakness, fatigue, or a vague
sense of being ill (malaise).
The bruising caused by purpura is different from the isolated
bruises a person often gets after bumping into an object or falling. Purpura
bruises develop from within the body, rather than from an injury.
A bleeding or clotting disorder is the most common cause of
purpura. Purpura that comes on quickly over a short period (a few hours) may be
a sign of a serious infection that requires immediate medical treatment.
Current as of:
November 14, 2014
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
I Want To...
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.