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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18462
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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, I am a 31 year old male with no past medical history.

Resolved Question:

Hello,
I am a 31 year old male with no past medical history. This morning when I went to the toilet there was a slight reddish tinge to my stool. I ate some red peppers yesterday but I cant tell if its from them. I have no symptoms I have normal bowel movements and have had no change in bowel habits. Any advice on this would be appreciated.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
Hello from JustAnswer.

It is true that certain foods can cause a red tint to the stool, including red peppers. However, doctors typically do not like to assume that red stools are from the diet. The usual next step are tests of the stool that would identify whether this is from blood. And these tests are becoming available over the counter in many countries. If the stool test for blood are negative, then there is no reason for concern that there may be blood causing the red tint to the stool.

If the stool test for blood is positive, then it would not be due to any food intake. If it is blood, the most common cause of blood in a 31 year old that is otherwise healthy is a haemorrhoid. Other anal problems, such as an anal fissure, is also fairly common. Worrisome causes of blood in the stool are not common in a healthy 31 year old, but if there is no evidence of an anal problem, further evaluation would be appropriate.

If I can provide any further information, please let me know.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for your response. However should I not wait to see when I go again to the toilet if there is still a tinge. I would imagine if there isnt it would indicate it was from something I ate. Also i do not have any other symptoms.

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
We typically recommend testing even for a single episode of redness in the stool. Since the stool is so dark, a fair amount of blood can be present and not change the appearance of the stool, so the fact that no more redness is visible does not mean that it is not present. It is true that it would be more likely that it would be from something you ate if it is only visible one time, but it would not be true 100% of the time, so we prefer performing the test so that we can be more certain whether there is any blood in the stool.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

But from what I have explained and all the factors, what do you think? Also in terms of colorectal cancer what are the risk factors and symptoms.

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
I think that it is most likely something that you ate, but as I noted above, we prefer to be more certain.

Even if the redness is from blood in the stool, it is very unlikely that it is colorectal cancer in a 31 year old. The primary risk factors for colon cancer are a positive family history and eating a diet that is higher in red meat and lower in fiber. The most common initial symptom is blood in the stool, but usually in an older person. After age 50, colon cancer would be the first consideration when there is blood in the stool. It is not suddenly the most common cause at age 50, but the likelihood increases to the point that it is the first consideration.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

What about if I wait to see after going again if this is still the case? As if it is an ongoing issue I might see this whenever going to the loo?

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
As I said above, we typically recommend testing even for a single episode of redness in the stool. Since the stool is so dark, a fair amount of blood can be present and not change the appearance of the stool, so the fact that no more redness is visible does not mean that it is not present.
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