Hematochezia: The Passage of Bloody Stool

Understanding Hematochezia

Hematochezia, or the passage of bloody stool, is often a symptom of serious conditions such as colorectal cancer or infection. It is vital to have this diagnosed, as it can indicate precancerous polyps in the colon.

Diagnosis of hematochezia usually involves a stool sample test or a colonoscopy. It is essential to identify the cause of rectal bleeding, as it can be a warning sign of underlying health issues.

Causes of Hematochezia

Conditions that can lead to hematochezia include:
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Infections like C. jejuni, Salmonella, and E. histolytica
  • Precancerous polyps in the colon

Rectal bleeding may be visible in the stool or hidden within feces (occult). It is important to conduct tests like colonoscopy, especially for individuals over 50 years old, to detect precancerous polyps early and prevent the development of malignancy.

Stool samples are commonly used to check for the presence of blood and determine potential causes of hematochezia.

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