Other than colon cancer what else can cause bloody stools?

Not Medical Advice: In addition to colon cancer, bloody stools may be a symptom of peptic ulcers, anal fissures, diverticular disease (bleeding small pouches in the colon), colitis (inflammation of the colon), hemorrhoids, Crohn’s disease, bacteria, angiodysplasia (bleeding abnormal blood vessels), and esophageal varicose veins or tears.

The bacteria Clostridium difficile can cause bloody stools. It has been in the news recently because of the frequency and severity of infections it causes, and the increased difficulty in treatment of it. C. difficile is passed in feces and most common in hospitals and other health care facilities.

Vigorous hand washing for 30 seconds with soap will successfully remove the spores. Alcohol-based sanitizers are not effective in destroying them.

Updated on Sunday, April 08 2012 at 01:30AM EDT
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