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What causes blood in stool and rectal bleeding? 33 possible conditions

See a list of possible causes in order from the most common to the least.


Rectal hemorrhage

Rectal bleeding is blood coming from the anus at the end of the digestive tract and may be associated with stools or bowel movements or seen in the toilet bowl or on toilet paper. Rectal hemorrhage, bleeding...

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Colitis is inflammation of the colon, often causing discomfort and pain in the abdomen, as well as other gastrointestinal symptoms. Colitis has many possible causes, which determine the type.

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Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease. It occurs when the lining of the large intestine (colon or bowel) and the rectum become inflamed.

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Hemorrhoids, also called piles, are swollen veins located around the anus or in the lower rectum. Internal hemorrhoids develop within the anus; external hemorrhoids develop outside of the anus. Of the two forms...

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Anal Fissure

An anal fissure is a small cut or tear in the skin lining the anus. Childbirth, straining during bowel movements, or bouts of constipation or diarrhea can all tear the anal lining. Anal fissures are usually not a caus...

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Colonic (Colorectal) Polyps

Colonic polyps are growths that appear on the surface of the large intestine. A person may have more than one polyp, and they may be flat or raised, benign or cancerous.

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The Many Sides of Bacterial Gastroenteritis

Bacterial infections are common causes of gastrointestinal infections. This type of infection is also called "food poisoning" and is often caused by poor hygiene or ingesting foods contaminated with bacteria.

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Colorectal (Colon) Cancer

Colorectal cancer is a cancer that originates in the rectum or colon. Both of these organs are located at the lower portion of your digestive system. The colon is at the end of the large intestine and the rectum is a...

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Proctitis is a condition in which when the lining tissue of the inner rectum becomes inflamed. The rectum is part of your lower digestive system.

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Constipation refers to infrequent bowel movements with hard, dry stools. Poor diet and dehydration are usually to blame, though certain diseases or other medical issues are possible causes.

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Diverticula are bulging sacs that can appear in the lining of your large intestine. Diverticulitis occurs when these sacs get acutely infected or inflamed.

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Anal Cancer

Anal cancer is an uncommon cancer in the anal canal. It's easy to mistake symptoms of anal cancer for other conditions such as hemorrhoids, which could delay a diagnosis. Human papillomavirus is closely related to ana...

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Necrotizing Enterocolitis

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Necrotizing enterocolitis is inflammation and death of intestinal tissue. It may involve just the lining or the entire thickness of the intestine. This very dangerous disease is most common in premature infants.

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Amebiasis is a parasitic infection, common in the tropics and caused by contaminated water. Symptoms can be severe and usually start 1-4 weeks after exposure.

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Peptic Ulcer

Peptic ulcers are painful sores in the lining of the stomach, esophagus, or small intestine. Peptic ulcers are a fairly common health problem.

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Crohn’s Disease

Crohn's disease is a chronic bowel disease that causes severe inflammation of the digestive tract. It is associated with abdominal pain, diarrhea, and may affect your quality of life. Crohn's disease is characterized b...

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Viral Gastroenteritis

Viral gastroenteritis, also known as the stomach flu, is caused by a number of different viruses. Its symptoms usually last for two to three days.

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The number one symptom of shigellosis, a bacterial infection, is diarrhea. Its symptoms vary in intensity, so you can have this infection and not know it.

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Stomach Ulcer

Stomach ulcers are painful sores in the stomach lining or small intestine. They occur when the mucus that protects the stomach from digestive juices is reduced.

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E. coli Infection

E. coli is a type of bacteria normally found in intestines. But certain kinds of E. coli can cause infection and severe symptoms like diarrhea and dehydration.

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This feature is for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose.
Please consult a healthcare professional if you have health concerns.