Ulcerative Proctitis – Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Ulcerative Proctitis

is a precursor to the more severe condition known as ulcerative colitis. It is characterized by an inflammation of the anus and lining of the rectum. The colon is about 5 feet long. But the condition affects only about the last 6-8 inches of it, essentially in the rectum area. About 300,000-500,000 Americans suffer from the more severe condition, namely, ulcerative colitis. Around 35% of this number are patients of the discussed condition.

As the word “ulcerative” suggests, this condition is characterized by the formation of sores of the inner lining of the rectum.

Anus and Rectum

Symptoms of Ulcerative Proctitis

The symptoms can be recurrent and are as follows:

  • Moderate to severe inflammation in the rectal lining
  • Diarrhea
  • Rectal Pain
  • Rectal bleeding and discharge
  • Spasms and cramping
  • Abdominal pain
  • Tenesmus or persistent urge to empty the bowel
  • Mucus with stool

Causes of Ulcerative Proctitis

There are no definite known causes of this ulcer ridden condition. It has not been linked to emotional stress or food. It is not transmitted from one individual to another. However, proctitis itself can be sexually transmitted and can be caused by emotional stress. However, a preexisting Inflammatory Bowel disease (IBD)makes one predisposed to it. It is believed that any virus or bacteria may interact with the body’s immune system to cause the disease. Any damage or injury to the bowel wall can bring about the sores.


It is mostly treated with topical medications which can be applied directly on the sores for getting quicker relief. Some of the medications commonly used are as follows:

  • Mesalamine enemas or suppositories
  • Hydrocortisone enemas, foams and suppositories

Prevention of the Condition

Some preventive measures may help one not to get the condition. They are as follows:

  • Go for periodic screening. This particular disease has a tendency to recur after a remission. It is important to complete the course of the medication suggested.
  • Dietary choices can certainly help with the condition. A diet rich in fiber can ease the strain while passing stools. Constipation can aggravate the pain in this condition.
  • As this condition is a precursor to the more severe ulcerative colitis, care needs to be taken to prevent it from progressing further.

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