Bleeding Specialist

Houston Gastrointestinal & Liver Clinic, P.A

Sreelatha Reddy, MD

Gastroenterologist located in Houston, TX & Sugarland, TX

Your esophagus, stomach, intestines, rectum, and anus make up your digestive tract. Bleeding from these organs is a symptom of a disease. If bleeding comes from any of these areas, try to forgo the embarrassment and call or make an appointment online today to speak with Dr. Sreelatha Reddy at Houston Gastrointestinal & Liver Clinic in Houston.

Bleeding Q & A

What is rectal bleeding?

Rectal bleeding reveals itself in several ways, including as bright red blood on toilet paper after a bowel movement, red toilet water, or dark stool. The color of your rectal bleeding helps indicate the source of the blood:

  • Bright red blood: bleeding low in your colon or rectum
  • Dark red or maroon blood:  bleeding higher in your colon or small bowel
  • Tar-like stool: bleeding in your stomach

It’s not always possible to see rectal bleeding. Sometimes, rectal bleeding only gets diagnosed when Dr. Reddy looks at your stool sample through a microscope.

Most causes of rectal bleeding are treatable and not considered serious.

What causes gastrointestinal bleeding?

Conditions that cause gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding, include:

Angiodysplasia

Angiodysplasia is the presence of abnormal or enlarged blood vessels that causes the GI tract to become fragile and bleed.

Benign tumors and cancer

Tumors in your esophagus, stomach, colon, or rectum, whether cancerous or not, cause bleeding when they weaken the lining of your GI tract.

Colitis

Ulcers in your large intestine are a complication of colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease that causes GI bleeding.

Diverticular disease

Bleeding occurs when small pouches form in your colon wall and push outward through weak spots.

Esophagitis

The most common cause of esophagitis is gastroesophageal reflux (better known as acid reflux). It happens when the ring of muscle that opens to allow food and drink into your stomach from your mouth, known as your lower esophageal sphincter, weakens or relaxes at inappropriate times, leading to stomach acid damaging your esophagus and causing sores and bleeding.

Gastritis

The overuse of certain medicines, infections, Crohn’s disease, and other serious illnesses and injuries cause gastritis. If untreated, gastritis often leads to bleeding ulcers.

Hemorrhoids or anal fissures

Constipation and straining while defecating cause your hemorrhoids to swell, leading to itching, pain, and bleeding in your anus or lower rectum. Anal fissures, small tears in your anus, cause similar symptoms.

Mallory-Weiss tears

Severe vomiting causes Mallory-Weiss tears, resulting in GI bleeding.

Colon polyps and esophageal variances, related to cirrhosis, also cause GI bleeding.

How is blood in your stool diagnosed?

The test used to find the cause of the blood in your stool is called endoscopy. During the procedure, Dr. Reddy uses a flexible instrument that gets inserted into either your mouth or rectum to look at the inside of your GI tract.

Rectal and GI bleeding is common, and symptoms develop quickly. To have your bleeding treated, call or make an appointment online today with Dr. Sreelatha Reddy at Houston Gastrointestinal & Liver Clinic in Houston.

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