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Red lines in the stool. No other symptoms. No history of colon cancer. Should I be worried?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
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I have been getting red lines in my stool. Not every day, but seems more lately. This has been happening off and on for about 6 months. The rest of the color is normal. These are not hard bowel movements. No blood on toilet paper. There is no history of colon cancer in my family, but I'm very concerned.
Posted Wed, 11 Apr 2012 in Digestion and Bowels
 
 
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 3 hours later
Hello,
Thanks for posting your query.
There are many foods and food additives which can change the color of stools. Foods which can cause a red colored lines in stool are red colored gelatin, popsicles, Kool-Aid, tomato juice, soup and beets. Beet can change the color of stools for more than 12 hours.

Keep an eye on the stool color. If you see these lines again without any prior history of ingestion of these food stuffs, then you have to consult a physician and get blood in stools ruled out. In that case, such changes in stool can be due to diverticulitis, vascular malformation, intestinal Infection (including parasites), irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Tumors, Polyps, Colon Cancer, Ulcers, Gastritis and Esophageal Varices.

I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Regards.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Red lines in the stool. No other symptoms. No history of colon cancer. Should I be worried? 42 hours later
I have not been eating anything red, but sometimes the color is there, sometimes not. Is that consistent with any of the possibilities you listed above?
 
 
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 10 hours later
Hello,

Thanks for writing again.

If you are not taking anything red in your diet and you are seeing the red stools frequently then you should get yourself investigated to find out any possible pathology early. The possibilities need to be ruled out by investigating further.

I hope this answers is helpful.

Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.

Wishing you good health.

Regards.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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