Blood in stools / vomitus
Blood in stools is caused due to bleeding in your digestive tract. If the amount of blood is small it is visible only in fecal occult test whereas if the amount is more, it becomes visible on the toilet paper or cleaning yourself after your bowel movements. The stool may appear black and tar-like if the bleeding happens in the upper part of the intestine.
What are the major causes of blood in stool?
- Diverticular disease – the small pouches that project outside from the wall of the colon are called diverticula. Usually, they are harmless but may bleed or become infected.
- Colitis – inflammation of the colon is termed colitis and can cause bleeding.
- Anal fissure – fissures are caused due to large, hard stools. These can be extremely painful and cause bleeding. The hard stool cuts the tissue lining the anus.
- Polyps or cancer – polyps are benign growths that can grow and become cancerous. Colorectal cancer is another common cause of bleeding.
- Peptic ulcers – open sores in the lining of the duodenum called ulcers are caused due to a bacterium called h. Pylori. Ulcers may also be caused by excess use of anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin, ibuprofen etc. These ulcers also cause bleeding.
How is blood in stools diagnosed?
Blood in stools can be diagnosed with the help of endoscopy and colonoscopy. Your doctor determines the specific line of treatment after a physical examination.
How is blood in stool treated?
Depending on the underlying cause of bleeding, the doctor may use one of the several techniques such as endoscopy wherein a band or clip is applied to close the bleeding site or inject medicine using angiography.
Surgery may be required in cases where bleeding is due to polyps or colorectal cancer.
However, treatment may involve simple dietary changes that you can do on your own. These include incorporating fiber in your diet to prevent constipation that leads to fissures and other problems.