A lower gastrointestinal bleed is defined as bleeding originating distal to the ileocecal valve which includes the colon, rectum, and anus. Bleeding can also be from the small intestine, large intestine. Massive bleeding can be life-threatening. Small amounts of bleeding over time may lead to other conditions, such as anemia. Lower gastrointestinal bleeding can appear like blood in the stool, on toilet paper or in the toilet bowl. Blood may appear dark maroon to bright red.
People may experience