Within hours a bruise will turn into a dark blue or purple color. As the bruise begins to heal it changes colors. The color change is due to the biochemical breakdown of hemoglobin that is found in the blood. As the different components of the blood are broken down, different colors will appear in the bruise.
Review Date 5/14/2017
Updated by: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.