When To See A Gastroenterologist For Rectal Bleeding
Seeing blood after moving your bowels can be worrisome, but there are many conditions which might cause this and not all are serious or life threatening. However, in some circumstances a trip to a gastroenterologist might be in order. Let’s find out when to see a gastroenterologist for rectal bleeding.
Less Concerning Rectal Bleeding
If the blood you notice after moving your bowels happens inconsistently and you are aware you have hemorrhoids, there is probably nothing to be concerned about. As long as you have no weakness afterward or feel faint, you should be fine.
The Color Of Blood Is Significant
If the color of the blood is dark or almost black it is most likely coming from the upper part of your gastrointestinal tract. It could be due to ulcers, gastritis, or an inflammation of the stomach lining, enlarged veins in the esophagus or stomach, trauma to the esophagus, or gastroenteritis which is an inflammation of the stomach or intestines.
If the blood you notice is bright red, it is most likely fresh blood. This indicates it is coming from the lower part of your gastrointestinal tract. It could be from hemorrhoids and anal fissures. You could have an ulcer, polyps on the intestinal wall, diverticulitis, inflammatory bowel disease like colitis and Crohn’s disease, or rectal prolapse where a section of the rectal wall protrudes from the anus. The worst case for bright blood is colon cancer.
When To See A Gastroenterologist
A GI doctor is specially trained to diagnose and treat conditions in the gastrointestinal tract. If you are noticing blood consistently and it is getting heavier, it might be time to see Digestive Health Services. If you are becoming concerned about the amount of blood you notice, it is always best to seek medical assistance.
More serious signs that you should see a gastroenterologist as soon as possible include the following:
- Rectal pain and pressure
- Feeling faint or dizzy
- Nausea and vomiting
- Bloody diarrhea
- Weight loss
- Less urination
- Bright red blood on your underwear, toilet paper, or in the bowl
There is typically no reason to panic if you notice a little blood in your stool as many conditions can be treated easily. Make note of the color, frequency, and amount of blood you notice.