Written by Editorial Team
Blood in the stool during pregnancy can be frightening. But if the quantity of blood is small then there is nothing to be alarmed about. Changes in bowel movements are very common, particularly during the first and third trimesters of pregnancy.
The expecting mothers can experience constipation or diarrhea, or spot a few drops of blood in the stool. Though a common condition in pregnancy, it can be quite disturbing. But before you hit the panic button, read on to know what it means, its possible causes, and how to deal with blood in stool during the pregnancy.
In This Article
During pregnancy, the blood may appear in the stool because of several reasons:
The most common cause of blood in the stool during pregnancy is constipation. Most women experience constipation while they are pregnant. It could either be mild or even can be very severe where passing stool turns into a painful experience.
Some reasons why pregnant women feel constipated are:
Pregnancy hormone progesterone along with other muscles will relax the stomach and intestinal muscle. The wavy movement of the muscle is interrupted and the food moves relatively slower. This, when coupled with a low intake of water and fiber, can result in constipation.
Hemorrhoids are swollen and inflamed veins in the rectum and anus that cause distress and bleeding. It is quite common during pregnancy, especially in the third trimester. The size of hemorrhoids varies from the size of a peanut to a size of a grape.
It may remain inside the rectum or could project through the anus. It can lead to rectal bleeding, particularly during the bowel movement resulting in the bloody stool.
Hemorrhoids are caused due to:
A fistula is a passage between the rectum area to the skin around the anus. Persistent discharge of pus or blood through the opening in the anal skin is one of the significant symptoms of anal fistula
An anal fissure is an exceptionally painful and severe state in which there are cuts in the anal area. Even a little strain in the anal area during passing the stool can result in the cracking of the fissure resulting in blood in the stool.
Anal fissure develops due to:
Anal fissure gets worse, become bigger, and gives way to anal tear. An anal tear is associated with blood in the stool
Diverticula are little pockets that project from the wall of the colon and are generally known as diverticula. Sometimes it can be infected, swollen lead to bleeding, and this condition is called diverticulosis. If this happens, you can spot blood in your stool
Bleeding from the rectal area is can also be due to cancer. Polyps are benign growth that occurs in the colon and when these polyps become big in size, they can cause bleeding. Some of these polyps can turn cancerous
Proctitis and Colitis: Sometimes the rectum or the colon can get inflamed which can result in ulcers. The swelling in the rectum is referred to as proctitis and the swelling in the colon is known as colitis. There are many reasons that could cause ulcers on the inside surface of the bowel area. These ulcers can cause bleeding and you can see spots of blood in the stool
Blood in the stool is a very normal phenomenon during pregnancy. Therefore, spotting a little quantity like a few drops of blood in the stool is nothing to be stressed about! Also, make sure that the blood is not from the vaginal area. Once you are certain that the blood is just from your rectal area and not from your vagina, it is not something you should be worried about.
Obviously, you need to keep your doctor updated regarding any changes that you see throughout pregnancy. So don’t forget to mention this on your next visit or over the next phone call. But here are some situations when you should contact your doctor immediately:
Here are some measures, which helps to alleviate the discomfort and pain that come hand in hand with blood in stool:
Your doctor can also suggest you some probiotic formulas that can also reduce the pressure you experience while passing stool which can cause blood in the stool. These supplements may lead to an improvement in your bowel function. Probiotics are considered very safe and thus can be consumed without any concern even in your pregnancy
With a rich experience in pregnancy and parenting, our team of experts create insightful, well-curated, and easy-to-read content for our to-be-parents and parents at all stages of parenting.Read more.
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