Cancer Keys: Rectal bleeding

Potential pitfall:

Rectal bleeding is a key symptom of colorectal cancer, but there are also a number of other benign causes. Tumours often bleed intermittently, so careful history taking is vital if other concerning symptoms are present.

Helpful hint:

NICE NG12 guidelines recommends referring adults using a suspected cancer pathway referral (for an appointment within 2 weeks) if they are 50 and over with unexplained rectal bleeding; and to consider a referral in adults aged under 50 with rectal bleeding and any of the following unexplained symptoms or findings:

  • abdominal pain
  • change in bowel habit
  • weight loss
  • iron‑deficiency anaemia.

Cancer Keys are brought to you by GatewayC.

Find out more:

  • Download this Cancer Key here
  • Read NICE NG12 guidance here
  • Access GatewayC’s Colorectal Cancer – Early Diagnosis course here

LinkedIn Twitter Facebook

Latest from the Blog

How reliable is the CA125?

How reliable is the CA125?

While the CA125 blood test is useful for diagnosing and monitoring people with ovarian cancer, 25% of ​patients with ovarian cancers will have a normal CA125 level. Therefore, the CA125 test alone is not an accurate diagnostic tool ​and primary care professionals...

read more
Are bone metastases visible on an X-ray?

Are bone metastases visible on an X-ray?

The most common site of secondary breast cancer is the bone. While breast cancer can metastasise to any bone, the most commonly affected areas are the: spine ribs skull pelvis upper bones of the arms and legs. Bone metastases may be picked up on a plain film X-ray,...

read more

Related Posts

Cancer Keys: Persistent bone pain and myeloma

Cancer Keys: Persistent bone pain and myeloma

Patients often visit healthcare professionals several times prior to the diagnosis of myeloma. This is mainly due to presenting symptoms being vague or overlapping with other conditions. Patients with myeloma can experience persistent bone pain – usually the back,...

read more