What are the signs and symptoms of proctitis?

Updated: Mar 27, 2020
  • Author: David E Stein, MD; Chief Editor: John Geibel, MD, MSc, DSc, AGAF  more...
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Answer

A patient with proctitis may present with some of the following symptoms and/or signs:

  • Rectal bleeding tends to be bright red in color and persistent but is rarely severe; it may last for several weeks or longer
  • Changes in bowel habits tend to occur, usually with a decrease in volume and an increase in mucoid contents; patients will complain of a mild diarrhea with a lot of mucus; the mild diarrhea is the most common complaint
  • Patients may report tenesmus or fecal urgency
  • Severe diarrhea generally is uncommon
  • Constipation may occur if the inflammation is severe
  • Patients may also complain of abdominal cramping; this is caused by the inflammation in the pelvis

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