Rectal Bleeding: Causes and when to visit a doctor?

medical eyeglasses and full of blood vials on diaper
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Rectal bleeding is a symptom of conditions like anal fissures, hemorrhoids, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), colorectal cancer, and ulcers. Normally, you can observe rectal bleeding on toilet paper, in the toilet bowl water or in your stool. It’s vital to contact your healthcare provider if you encounter rectal bleeding because it could be a sign of a severe medical condition.

What is Rectal Bleeding?

Looking down into your toilet and seeing red color can be scary. Your brain might go to different places as alarm bells ring that something is serious. This is called rectal bleeding. A symptom of many other medical conditions, rectal bleeding can range from being mild to being a sign of a severe illness like colorectal cancer. If you’re encountering rectal bleeding, you might see blood in a few distinct ways —, in the water of the toilet bowl, on your toilet paper as you wipe, or in your poop. It can be of different colors, ranging from dark maroon to bright red to black.

  1. Bright red blood means typically bleeding that’s low in your rectum or colon.
  2. Maroon dor ark red blood can mean that you are bleeding higher in the colon or the small bowel.
  3. Melena (black and tar-like stool) normally points to stomach bleeding, such as bleeding from ulcers.

When to visit a doctor?

Some of the possible diseases that may cause bright-red blood include anal fissures, piles, hemorrhoids, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Thus, if you have rectal bleeding accompanied by either fever, or stomach pain, or acid reflux, make an appointment with your doctor immediately. The sooner you seek medical attention, the greater your chances of minimizing the likelihood of it turning into something more serious. Additionally, rectal bleeding can also signal imminent colon cancer.

A medical examination will help determine the exact cause of the condition. Typically, the doctor will order a series of tests, which include stool samples and urine tests. The doctor may also take a look at the surrounding area around the anus and find out if there is any abnormality. If there is, he will most likely want to perform a biopsy, in which case he will remove a small amount of tissue. If the cause of the condition is a small amount of trauma to the rectum or intestines, and it is not life-threatening, then doctors can use antibiotics in treating the condition.

Remember that when you see an unusual color in your poop is what you ate. There are different foods that can change the color of your stool and make it look block or even red. This is often mistaken for blood in your stool, and so, you shouldn’t start counting your days if you see red color in your poop, it could be due to beetroot, or any other food item you’ve eaten.

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