Is it at all possible for irritable bowel syndrome to cause any bleeding, or blood to appear in the mucus that comes out when you have a bowel movement?

“Mucus is the product of shedding of lining of the large intestine,” says Dr. Saad Habba, MD, an attending consultant physician (gastroenterologist) at Overlook Medical Center in Summit, NJ.

He adds, “It is a reaction to any irritant that may start the process. In IBS, the colon seems to react by shedding some of its inner lining which is expressed visually as mucus.

“In IBS, bloody mucus never occurs. So if one sees blood in any shape or form with or without mucus, the diagnosis of IBS would be erroneous. and one is advised to seek the attention of a gastroenterologist to explain the source of bleeding. Bleeding is never a sign of IBS.”

Dr. Habba pioneered the concept of IBS being a wastebasket diagnosis and collection of different entities rather than a true single medical condition. He’s been presented and published in 26 national and international medical journals and symposia.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.  



Top image: ©Lorra Garrick