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What Does Blood in the Stool Mean?

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
February 19, 2015



Stomach Problems  

Find out what this symptom means for you and whether it’s time to see your Suffolk County gastroenterologist.

It can be a bit unnerving when you notice blood in your stool. While not all of these issues are serious or require immediate medical attention, it’s still important to seek the advice of your Suffolk County gastroenterologist when you are experiencing this unpleasant Stoolproblem. Find out what could be the cause of your bleeding and whether it’s time to see your gastroenterologist.

Anal fissure: A tear in the lining of the anus is a common issue that causes minor bleeding. This can also cause pain during bowel movements. You may notice bright red blood either in the toilet or on the toilet paper. This issue is not a cause for concern and most of the time it will heal on its own without treatment.

Hemorrhoids: These masses of tissue in the anus occur in everyone; however, when they become enlarged they can cause bleeding; however, the bleeding is usually mild. While anal fissures and hemorrhoids are often mistaken for one another, hemorrhoids won’t typically cause pain when you use the bathroom. Most of the time hemorrhoids will go away on their own; however, if you experience extreme itching and pain you may want to talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologist about your treatment options.

Diverticulitis: This condition usually affects adults in their 50s and 60s and is caused by small sacs that develop on the colon. These sacks do not go away on their own and require surgery to remove them. Many people with diverticulitis don’t even experience any symptoms and the condition is not a cause for concern. However, if you do experience bleeding from this condition it will definitely be heavier than bleeding caused by anal fissures or hemorrhoids and it’s usually darker in color.

Colitis: Colitis is a condition that causes inflammation of the colon. Colitis can be caused by a variety of different diseases including Crohn’s colitis, ulcerative colitis and bacterial and viral infections. Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s colitis cause chronic inflammatory that is characterized by bloody diarrhea and abdominal pain. The bleeding may be severe at times. Colitis caused by bacteria or a virus can also cause abdominal pains, diarrhea and bleeding.

Peptic ulcers: These sores occur in the lining of the stomach or upper portion of the small intestines. Peptic ulcer can be caused by a bacterial infection or long-term use of NSAID medications such as aspirin. Peptic ulcers can cause chest and abdominal pain as well as fatigue, vomiting, and dark, bloody stools. Your Suffolk County gastroenterologist can diagnose and treat your peptic ulcers with prescription medication.

If you are noticing blood in your stool or experiencing other symptoms as well then it’s probably time you scheduled an appointment with your Suffolk County gastroenterologist, Dr. Ravi Singh, MD at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates.

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