Dr. Meah Talks: Painful Bowl Movement

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What causes painful bowl movement?


There’s nothing more aggravating to a person than having to use the restroom only to find that you’re in pain. The pain can be large, or small. Long and drawn out, or quick. Regardless, there’s pain. You shouldn’t be having pain while you’re using the bathroom, so today we’re going to look at the possible causes for this pain.


  • Constipation: Constipation can occur when passing hard stools through the body. If you’re having regular constipation, Dr. Meah or one of our highly qualified physicians can prescribe or recommend a stool softening agent to help ease your discomfort.


  • Anal Fissures: These things you may have heard of already. They are small tears around the lining of the anus. Fissures may occur as a result of straining to pass a particularly difficult or hard stool. However, they can also be caused by inflammatory conditions such as Chron’s Disease or certain types of infections.



  • Hemorrhoids: This pesky condition is caused by enlarged veins around the anus or rectum. Typically, they only cause irritation and minor bleeding. However, it’s important to treat them. If a blood clot forms within a hemorrhoid, it can become very tender and lead to severe pain that worsens dramatically during bowl movements.

Symptoms: Bleeding, Irritation, Visible hemorrhoids.


  • Abscess: An abscess is a swollen area within tissue that often contains pus. They generally occur near the anus at the site of a fissure or a hemorrhoid and can easily spread into other tissues. Surgical drainage may be necessary, and often antibiotics are prescribed to eliminate the infection.

Symptoms: Bleeding, Irritation, Visible hemorrhoids.


Finally, painful bowel movements may stem from an obstruction of the rectum or anus due to cancer or other growths. So, it is important that our doctors perform a digital rectal examination in patients suffering from severe or chronic pain while moving their bowels. If no obvious cause for pain is found, then it is prudent to perform an endoscopic exam to fully evaluate the rectum and sigmoid colon to rule out an obstructing mass. In addition to cancer, polyps of the rectum can also grow large enough to obstruct the anus, leading to pain with bowel movements. The risk of cancer is a greater in an older person, but all people with painful defecation should see a doctor to evaluate this condition.

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