Rectal bleeding refers to the passage of blood through the anus along with the stools. The rectum is the last part of the large intestine present just above the anus. Rectal bleeding is referred to as bright red to dark maroon colored blood passing along with stools through the anus. The amount of blood loss varies from mild traces to severe life-threatening bleeds. Bleeding can occur from any part of the gastrointestinal tract due to various causes.
Other conditions such as stomach ulcers, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease and cancer of the colon or rectum may also cause rectal bleeding.
The color of blood and consistency of stools varies depending on the location and the cause of bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract. The color of stool may vary from bright red to maroon to dark red or black. A stool blood test may be required in cases of mild bleeding that is invisible to the naked eye.
Abdominal pain, visible blood clots or bleeding without pain are the typical symptoms associated with rectal bleeding. You may also experience weakness, chest pain, dizziness, shortness of breath, or blood pressure variations based on the amount of blood loss.
Do not ignore any type of bleeding in the stools. Rectal bleeding can occur due to a mild condition like piles or a more severe condition that may require immediate intensive treatment to control it.
The diagnosis of rectal bleeding depends to a large extent on the patients’ age and medical history. Your doctor may ask questions about the bleeding such as the color of blood, amount of blood loss or other associated symptoms. A physical examination of the anus can confirm the presence of anal fissures or hemorrhoids and helps to rule out other associated diseases.
Rectal bleeding can effectively be treated depending upon the related cause and underlying diagnosis.
The most effective preventive measures of rectal bleeding include:
You should seek immediate medical care if you notice blood in your stools. 281-893-44884