Rectal bleeding

Rectal bleeding

The passage of blood per rectum is a very common symptom. It is often attributed to 'piles' and indeed hemorrhoids or 'piles' are one of the common causes. However, there are other causes including diverticular disease, inflammatory bowel disease (Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn's disease), anal fissure, fistula-in-ano, solitary rectal ulcer syndrome, neoplasia, arteriovenous malformation (angioecatias) and radiation proctitis.

It is important to know when and how to investigate this symptom further. Investigations may involve blood tests, sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy. The type and amount of the bleeding as well as the age of the patient are important in the assessment. Rectal bleeding always warrants medical advice.

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