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Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jan 5, 2023.

Proctitis is a condition where you have inflammation of the lining of your rectum. The rectum is the last part of your large intestine that ends at your anus. If the inflammation continues into your colon, it is called proctolitis. Proctitis may be a short-term or long-term condition.


Informed consent

is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that you may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done. Make sure all your questions are answered.

Blood transfusion:

You may need blood put back into your body if you have lost large amounts. During a blood transfusion, you will get whole blood or certain blood cells through an IV.

IV fluids:

You may need fluids given through an IV if you become dehydrated.


  • Antibiotics: This medicine is given if a bacterial infection is causing your proctitis. Take them as directed.
  • Antiviral medicine: This medicine is given if a viral infection is causing your proctitis.
  • Antiinflammatory medicine: This medicine helps prevent swelling.
  • Antiulcer medicine: This is given as a pill, suppository, or enema to coat the bowel and help prevent further damage to the tissues. It may also help with tissue healing.
  • Steroids: Steroid medicine helps decrease swelling.


  • Lab tests: These may be done to find if your proctitis is caused by bacteria or allergies. A sample of your blood, stool, or discharge may be taken.
  • Anoscopy: During this test, a short tube is carefully put into your anus and up the rectum. This lets healthcare providers look inside your anus and rectum.
  • Endoscopy: A long, thin tube with a small camera on the end is put into your anus. healthcare providers will look for problems in your rectum and colon. A small amount of tissue may be taken from your bowel and sent for tests.

Treatment options

The following list of medications are in some way related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options


  • Procedures to stop bleeding:
    • Formalin: This is a chemical solution applied to the walls of your rectum to decrease bleeding. This treatment may be used for radiation proctitis.
    • Heat therapy: This treatment uses heat to control bleeding and diarrhea caused by radiation. Heat therapy includes laser therapy or argon plasma coagulation (APC). Ask your healthcare provider for more information on heat therapy.
    • Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT): This is used to increase the oxygen in your body. HBOT may help promote healing of tissues damaged by radiation.
  • Surgery: Surgery may be needed if other treatments have failed. Surgery to remove the damaged part of your bowel may be done.


Some tests or procedures done inside your bowels may cause a perforation (tear) and narrowing. If not treated, proctitis may cause more bleeding or ulcers and scars to form. Scar tissue may lead to narrowing of your rectum. Germs causing your infection may enter your tissues and cause an abscess (collection of pus). A fistula (abnormal connection) may form from your anus or rectum to your skin or another organ. If you are a woman, a fistula may connect your rectum to your vagina.


You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.