Primary Article

Prolonged Rectal Bleeding Associated With Hemorrhoids: The Diagnostic Contribution of Colonoscopy

Authors: AMOS PINES MD, ELIYAHU SHEMESH MD, LEON BAT MD

Abstract

ABSTRACT: We studied 387 patients with prolonged rectal bleeding and hemorrhoids (grades 2 and 3) routinely examined by anoscopy, proctoscopy, single contrast barium enema, and hemoglobin measurements. Normal results were obtained in 86 patients above the age of 40. Total colonoscopy in these patients revealed one patient (1.2%) with cancer, 19 (22.1%) with colorectal polyps, and one (1.2%) with angiodysplasia. These findings indicate that in patients above age 40, a full investigation of the large bowel should be done in every case of prolonged rectal bleeding despite the presence of substantial hemorrhoids. Double contrast barium enema or colonoscopy must be used, rather than single contrast barium enema, which proved to be an inaccurate method of investigating prolonged rectal bleeding.

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References