Rectal bleeding is serious in most cases and can have a number of different causes. The cause depends upon your other symptoms and what they may all be connected to.
One not so serious cause for rectal bleeding is an anal fissure. Anal fissures are those little tears that occur within the anal canal's lining. These happen from the passage of too many hard stools over a period of time. These fissures will cause some rectal bleeding, rectal itching, and pain when passing stools. Fissures will usually heal on their own, and you can prevent them by eating enough fiber to avoid constipation. They only need treatment if they don't heal.
Colon polyps are usually asymptomatic and don't cause any symptoms until they have been around for awhile and start to bleed. In that case, you will notice rectal bleeding after going to the bathroom. When a polyp also grows large, it can block up the bowel, and cause a blockage. Abdominal pain will also follow.
An inflammatory bowel disease known as Crohn's Disease can cause rectal bleeding and many other unpleasant symptoms too. One of the most frequent symptoms of Crohn's Disease is diarrhea, ulcers on the intestine, a lot of stomach pains and discomfort, fevers, skin problems, and eye problems too. This is a very serious condition which takes awhile to diagnose and figure out. Your doctor will do several tests if he or she suspects this condition.
Hemorrhoids may cause rectal bleeding and a lot of discomfort especially when you sit down. The bleeding you experience with hemorrhoids will not be painful, but the hemorrhoid itself is painful. There is also a swelling taking place around the anal area, and a lump which is typical. Hemorrhoids can usually by relieved by the usage of ointments and other topical treatments for that purpose. If they grow too large and uncomfortable, they may need to be surgically removed.
Anal cancer always causes a lot of rectal bleeding. That is the predominant sign along with anal itching and pain there. Another thing is that there is also a mass in the anal canal that is present. Doctors may suspect that you have anal cancer if you describe these symptoms and they can feel a mass or tumor in a rectal examination. An anoscope is usually also used for a direct visual examination.
Colon cancer is yet another cause of rectal bleeding which is also accompanied by tiredness, a fullness in the rectal area, and many changes in bowel habits. Colon cancer is very curable if it is detected early on and treated right away. A scope is used inside the rectal area in order to find out about cancers present and also take samples of tissue.
If any of these conditions concern you, it is important to discuss them with your doctor right away. Early treatment is always important.