Hawaii Gastroenterology Specialists
Gastroenterology located in Aiea, HI & Honolulu, HI
Seeing bright red blood in the toilet after going to the bathroom may be alarming, but it’s usually not a cause for concern. However, the experts at Hawaii Gastroenterology Specialists recommend an evaluation to pinpoint the cause and make sure nothing more serious is going on. With offices conveniently located in both Honolulu and Aiea, Hawaii, you can receive prompt diagnosis and start treatment for conditions that may be causing blood to appear in your stool. Call or schedule an appointment online today.
Blood in Stool Q & AWhat Causes Blood in the Stool?
You may be experiencing blood in your stool for any number of reasons. The good news is that most causes of bloody stool are not life-threatening. Some of the most common causes of blood in the stool include:
- Hemorrhoids: If the blood in your stool or in the toilet bowl is bright red, you may have hemorrhoids. These painless swollen blood vessels located on the rectum or anus may bleed during a bowel movement.
- Anal Fissure: An anal fissure is a crack or tear in the skin of your anus that may bleed during a bowel movement.
- Diverticulosis: Your colon may develop small pouches, referred to as diverticula, that sometimes bleed or become infected and cause blood in the stool. Diverticula are common and don’t always cause problems.
- Stomach Ulcer: Also referred to as a peptic ulcer, a stomach ulcer is an open sore in your stomach that may bleed, leading to dark, tarry stools.
Polyps, cancer, and colitis may also cause bleeding in your digestive tract and blood in your stool. The only way to know the cause is to come into the office for an evaluation.How Do You Diagnose Bloody Stool?
Your expert at Hawaii Gastroenterology Specialists may be able to determine the cause of the blood in your stool after reviewing your symptoms and performing a rectal examination. To assist in diagnosis, it’s important that you can describe your symptoms, especially the color of the blood in your stool.
If the source of your bleeding can’t be determined after a physical examination, you may need additional testing, such as:
- Colonoscopy or Endoscopy: In both a colonoscopy and endoscopy, your gastroenterologist inserts a camera into your digestive tract to find the source of the bleeding. A colonoscopy looks at your large intestines, while an endoscopy looks at the stomach and small intestines.
- Barium X-Ray: This kind of X-ray provides an image of your digestive tract using barium, which is a contrast material that allows for a better picture of what’s going on inside.
- Capsule Endoscopy: During a capsule endoscopy, you swallow of a small camera that travels through your digestive tract and provides images along the way. The camera naturally passes on its own through your digestive system.
Treatment for your bleeding depends on the cause, so your gastroenterologist develops a plan specific to your needs.Is there Anything I Can Do to Prevent Blood in My Stool?
As a practice focused on prevention, the experts at Hawaii Gastroenterology Specialists recommend you eat a healthy diet filled with fiber-rich foods to improve bowel movements, which may reduce your risk of developing hemorrhoids, anal fissures, or infected diverticula.
If you have concerns about blood in your stool, call today or schedule an appointment online.