Rectal Bleeding and Blood in Stool
Earlier, we’ve already mentioned that one of the signs and symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease is bloody diarrhea. Now, let’s talk about rectal bleeding and blood in the stool.
Rectal bleeding is when you have bright, red blood in your rectum. Often, this is indicative of ulcerative colitis. This is because the bleeding in ulcerative colitis often happens in the large intestine or rectum itself. Since the blood is from the lower GI tract, it’s still relatively “new”, maintaining its bright-red color.
The blood from the rectum or large colon can also mix with your stool, which you can observe during bouts of diarrhea.
However, if you noticed that your stool is black, it could indicate that you are bleeding further up into your gastrointestinal tract. This is common in Crohn’s disease. Because the blood came from the upper GI tract, it’s “old” and has already turned black.
Finally, people with IBD also experience fatigue or “an overwhelming sense of continued tiredness.”
What’s unique about fatigue is that even if you get adequate rest and sleep, you will still feel tired.
Reports suggest that there seems to be no difference in the fatigue experienced by patients with ulcerative colitis and patients with Crohn’s disease.
Like the other signs and symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease that we’ve discussed, patients report that their fatigue gets better as their disease improves. There are times, however, when there’s a “lag.” This means that a patient may be in remission, but it will take a few weeks or months before they regain their energy. Finally, some patients are still affected by fatigue even when they are in remission.
Other Signs and Symptoms of IBD
Please note that not all people with IBD experience all the symptoms we described above. However, some may suffer from other symptoms such as:
- Weight loss
- High temperature
- Appetite loss