Rectal Bleeding Treatment Specialist Q&A
If you are experiencing rectal bleeding, then you should seek medical attention right away. Call our team at Columbia Urgent Care or visit us online to book an appointment. We have convenient locations to serve you in Tibbetts St. Portland OR, Washington St. Portland OR, Happy Valley OR, Division St Portland OR and Tigard OR.
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Rectal bleeding can be caused by a number of different medical conditions that can range from being mild to severe. It is not normal to experience bleeding from this area of the body and so any bleeding should be checked out by a doctor to determine the cause and source of the bleeding. In most cases, your first step when you experience rectal bleeding is to see your family doctor or primary care physician.
As a general practitioner, these doctors can ask you a series of questions about your diet, lifestyle, bowel movements, and general health to get a feeling for what may be causing the bleeding, as well as perform an initial exam. Depending on their findings, they may be able to treat you, or they may refer you to a specialist for further investigation. The type of specialist that you can be referred to will vary, based on what your doctor thinks may be the cause.
The options of potential specialists include a gastroenterologist or a proctologist. A gastroenterologist is a medical doctor that specializes in issues and conditions that affect the colon, while a proctologist specializes in the rectum and anus.
Rectal bleeding can occur as the result of a number of different conditions. The cause or at least the source of the bleeding can often be determined by the color of the blood that is expelled from the rectum. This is usually noticed either on the tissue used to wipe the affected area, inside the toilet bowl, or in the stool that was expelled from the body.
Causes of rectal bleeding can include hemorrhoids which can be either internal or external to the body, an anal fissure, anal fistula or abscess, diverticulosis, inflammatory bowel disease, ulcers, and large polyps. Some foods can also cause the stool to appear discolored, and make it seem like there is rectal bleeding due to strong pigments that occur in the food, such as black licorice, dark berries, beets, and red gelatin.
Additionally, some existing medical conditions or antibiotics can affect the digestive process, and as a result, change the color of the stool to make it appear similar to what it may look like in someone experiencing rectal bleeding.
Rectal bleeding should not happen as part of the body’s normal processes and functions. For this reason, any signs of rectal bleeding should be checked out by your doctor in order to rule out any potentially serious medical conditions and get to the root cause of the bleeding. In some cases, it could be a sign of a medical issue that is affecting the bowels, intestines, rectum, or anus, and in other cases, it could be a sign of a serious health condition affecting another part of the body.
If you are experiencing heavy rectal bleeding or seeing signs of blood through multiple bowel movements, it is important to seek medical care immediately. When your primary care physician isn’t available, whether due to the timing being outside of their standard office hours or because their schedule is full, patients in Portland OR and the surrounding area can receive urgent medical attention as walk-in patients through Columbia Clinic Urgent Care. With 5 conveniently located urgent care clinics, we are able to provide quick and thorough medical care to patients without an appointment, regardless of if they are current patients.
Like any other medical condition, it is important to find the root cause of rectal bleeding in order to determine the right course of treatment. In order to properly treat rectal bleeding, doctors will need to provide treatment based on the cause as opposed to just treating the symptoms. In many cases, rectal bleeding is a symptom of a larger medical issue and once the condition has been thoroughly treated, the rectal bleeding will stop.
Treatments will vary and will be based on the cause but can include ointments, change in diet, increase in water intake, or potentially surgery. Working with your doctor will determine the source of the bleeding, as well as what treatment they recommend. At Columbia Clinic Urgent Care, our team of medical professionals can help you with a wide range of medical concerns, including rectal bleeding, in a private, confidential, and safe environment. We serve patients from Portland OR, PDX, Happy Valley OR, Tigard OR, Milwaukie OR, Cedar Hills OR, Cedar Mill OR, Lake Oswego OR, Oak Grove OR, Vancouver WA, Aloha OR, Minnehaha WA, Gladstone OR, Tualatin OR, West Linn OR, Fairview OR, Oregon City OR.