Emperor Hirohito discharged a considerable amount of blood Sunday, and doctors gave the 87-year-old monarch an emergency blood transfusion, palace officials said.

The discharge contained fresh blood, indicating it came from recent internal bleeding, said Kenji Maeda, Imperial Household Agency spokesman. Doctors believe the emperor has been hemorrhaging from the area of his upper intestine.Hirohito has discharged blood from his bowels intermittently since he became seriously ill Sept. 19. Palace officials described the discharge Sunday and on three previous occasions as "considerable."

That brought the total amount of blood the emperor has received since Sept. 19 to 36.7 pints.