I have bleeding from my rectum. Is that ok?
This is not an infrequent question at the 6-week postnatal visit
It is usually due to an anal fissure. An anal fissure results from tearing the anal mucosa with passage of hard large stools.
What can be done about it?
- You will need an examination to clarify diagnosis
- Try to avoid hard large stools and constipation
- Change your diet so you have more fruit and vegetables and less red meat (which can constipate you). Have bran, sultanas, prunes and liquorice. Keep away from processed food and junk food which is more constipating (as well as not being healthy for you).
- Increase your water intake to 1 – 2 litres per day
- Exercise with lots of walking. Lack of activity tends to constipate
- Metamucil or similar anti-constipation medication can help
- A topical anti haemorrhoid preparation can make you more comfortable
Usually it will heal after a short time. Occasionally you will need to see a colo-rectal surgeon if doesn’t heal. If on examination there is no fissure and you have rectal bleeding you will need to be assessed by a colo-rectal surgeon.