What Is Minor Rectal Bleeding?
Minor rectal bleeding occurs when drops of blood are visible on the toilet paper after wiping. Small drops of blood can also be found in or around the toilet bowl. It is important to take note of the color of the bloody discharge. If the blood is bright red, this may be a very normal sign that something simple, such as an anal fissure or hemorrhoid, is the cause for the minor release of blood. On the other hand, if the color of the bloody discharge happens to be black, maroon or tarry colored, then this could indicate that there is a more serious cause for the minor bleeding being exhibited. In order to rule out any serious problems, such as rectal cancer, it is best to be examined by a qualified physician who will take proper diagnostic steps to determine the actual cause in question. Catching the cause early is generally best–especially when the problem is cancer-related.
Bleeding hemorrhoids are but one type of internal or external cause of minor bloody discharge from the anus. Though there are many reasons for rectal bleeding, hemorrhoids are one of the most common reasons. To determine the extent of the problem, a qualified physician should make a thorough examination of the area around and inside the anus. This examination may involve a number of different diagnostic procedures. For starters, the physician may visually examine the area around the anus for signs of swelling or inflammation in the area. More invasive measures include the physician using a rubber glove with a lubricant, to manually insert their finger inside the patient’s anal region to feel around for anything that seems abnormal. For a more intense examination, the physician may reschedule their patient to come in for a colonoscopy. Other than hemorrhoids, common causes of minor rectal bleeding the physician will be looking for may include, but are not limited to, anal fissures, polyps, proctitis, rectal ulcers and colon cancer.
What Are Hemorrhoids?
If you have been chronically constipated for a long time or you simply strain a lot on the toilet, chances are you will have a run-in with hemorrhoids sooner or later. A hemorrhoid, also referred to as a “pile”, occurs when blood vessels in or around the anus swell or become agitated. Often the region of the skin, inside or around the anus, will tend to itch where a hemorrhoid has started to form. Hemorrhoids are generally not overly painful, but this does not mean that they should be ignored. No one knows for absolute certain why hemorrhoids cause minor bleeding. However, certain other factors seem to be related to the symptom of bleeding hemorrhoids. Factors like obesity, pregnancy, heavy lifting and sitting or standing for long periods of time appear to be present in people with minor rectal bleeding associated with hemorrhoids.
What Treatments Are Used to Cure Hemorrhoids?
In the case when constipation is the cause of hemorrhoids, addressing the causes of chronic constipation helps to put an end to minor rectal bleeding. Stool softeners make it easier to pass fecal matter through the anus without unnecessarily exacerbating the swelling of the hemorrhoid. Drinking more water, eating more fiber and resisting the urge to strain during bowel movements may also help with a patient’s hemorrhoid recovery efforts. Other methods include band ligation, which attempts to safely cut off the blood flow to the swollen area, reducing the size and internal pressure of the hemorrhoid. Infrared coagulation may also be used to reduce swelling. If all other measures fail to cure the hemorrhoid, it may be necessary to perform surgery to remove the hemorrhoid. With a little careful thought and effort, a qualified physician should be able to guide you to the best treatment option possible for your situation.