ZocdocAnswersWhat would cause rectal bleeding?

Question

What would cause rectal bleeding?

Came on suddenly lots of blood,and blood clots. This happened to my husband tonight.

Answer

You should bring your husband to the emergency room. Rectal bleeding can be caused by a bleeding disorder if your husband is on blood thinning medications such as coumadin. It can also be caused by diverticulosis, malignancy, hemorrhoids, or ateriovenuous malformations (AVM). Diverticulosis is when a part of the colon outpouches onto a blood vessel. It can cause painless bright red blood. Malignancy can be colon cancer which can cause rectal bleeding. It is also associated with weight loss and constipation. There are two types of hemorrhoids which are external and internal. Internal hemorrhoids are painless and cause cause bleeding. AVM are blood vessel malformations that can occur with aging which can cause rectal bleeding in older patients. Rectal bleeding is a concerning symptom. Again, you should bring your husband to the emergency room. You should also make an appointment with a gastrointestinal doctor as soon as possible. He needs basic labs drawn to ensure that his red blood cell count is not too low. He may also need something called a colonoscopy which is a camera that is used to look inside the colon. Also, an upper gastrointestinal source should be ruled out. Upper GI bleeding can be from peptic ulcer disease. If the bleeding is profuse, it can cause rectal bleeding. The stool is also black in these cases.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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