Hawaiian woman bleeds from eyes and mouth, condition remains a mystery

Doctors in the US are puzzled by the unexplained bleeding from a young woman's eyes and mouth.

Ms Linnie Ikeda, 24, has suffered from spontaneous bruising all over her body since she was 18. Her condition took a turn for the worse when she started bleeding uncontrollably from her eyes and mouth about two years later.

For the bruising, the young woman from Hawaii was diagnosed with Gardner-Diamond Syndrome, a rare disease which causes unexplained, painful bruising on the patient's arms, legs, trunk and face. The condition mostly affects those who suffer from anxiety or stress, according to the National Institutes of Health.

However, Ms Ikeda's bleeding remains a mystery.

In 2010, her tongue "split down the middle and bled." To stop the bleeding, she underwent 11 surgeries and had 7 blood transfusions to replace the blood lost during the incident, reported Yahoo News.

Her condition deteriorated when her eyes started to bleed spontaneously while she was sleeping at night.

Ms Ikeda's mother would find her with blood all over her face whenever she woke her up.

In a video interview, Ms Ikeda said: "When it bleeds, it doesn't hurt. It's what leads up to the bleeding." She would feel "increased pressure in (her) eyes", which would become "puffy and raw" each time before her eyes bled.

Hawaii News Now reported that the young woman has sought advice from a total of 30 doctors but no one has been able to diagnose her illness.

Ms Ikeda is also often teased whenever others notice her condition. She recounted being hurt by someone who said: "That girl is strange. I don't want to be around her. What if she's contagious?"

She added: "It's a struggle, I just live to survive each day."

After battling the bleeding for years, Ms Ikeda is sharing her story in the hopes of finding a lead to her undiagnosed condition, as well as comfort others in similar predicaments who are suffering in silence.

minlee@sph.com.sg