Rectal bleeding refers to any bleeding from the rectum or anus.
There are several types of rectal bleeding, including:
- Haemorrhoids: swollen veins in the anus that can cause bleeding during bowel movements
- Anal fissures: small tears in the lining of the anus that can cause bleeding and pain during bowel movements
- Diverticulitis: a condition in which small pouches form in the lining of the colon and can become infected and bleed
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): conditions such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis that can cause inflammation and bleeding in the rectum and colon
- Polyps: small growths in the colon that can bleed
- Colorectal cancer: a type of cancer that can cause rectal bleeding
Symptoms of rectal bleeding include blood in the stool, on toilet paper, or in the toilet bowl. Other symptoms may include abdominal pain, diarrhoea, and constipation.
Diagnosis of rectal bleeding typically involves a physical examination and may include tests such as a colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy or stool sample test.
Treatment for rectal bleeding depends on the underlying cause. Haemorrhoids can be treated with creams, ointments, and supplements. Anal fissures can be treated with medication or surgery.
Diverticulitis and IBD can be treated with antibiotics, medications and in some cases surgery. Polyps and colorectal cancer can be removed surgically.
It’s important to note that rectal bleeding can be caused by serious conditions, so it’s important to seek medical attention if you experience rectal bleeding.
To discuss diagnosis and treatment options, please book an appointment with our specialist.
To learn more about appendicitis, please click on https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/bleeding-from-the-bottom-rectal-bleeding/
Dr Ibrahim Yahli MD MRCPsych