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Constipated, getting stabbing pain in colon. Noticed blood in stool. Is this serious?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 364 Questions
i get a stabbing pain in my colon on my left side on and off depending on what i eat have for about 6 years now but today i have had a ache on that side in my colon all day today and i think i am constipated but went to the bathroom alittle bit but when i wiped there was a lot of bright red blood on the toilet paper is this something serious???
Posted Sun, 5 May 2013 in Abdominal Pain
Answered by Dr. Enrique Molina 1 hour later
Blood in the stool can be an alarming symptom and should not be taken lightly. However in your case (young person with history of constipation) it is most likely secondary to hemorrhoids that can intermittently bleed.
You should definitely seek medical attention by a gastroenterologist, as you will need at least a flexible sigmoidoscopy or full colonoscopy to make sure you do not have any ulcerations, polyps or colon masses (very rare at your age).
The pain on your left side is likely from being constipated, and therefore stretching of your colon.
I suggest you to take a stool softener on a daily basis (such as sennokot, colace, milk of magnesia). These are all over the counter.
If you feel you indeed have hemorrhoids, you can do sitz baths (sit in a bathtub with warm water for about 15 minutes twice a day - you can add "epson salts" to the water). This will not cure the hemorrhoids, and you may need surgical correction if these are large.
Hope that helped. Let me know if you have further questions or concerns.
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