St. Luke's Hospital
Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
Find a Physician Payment Options Locations & Directions
Follow us on: facebook twitter Mobile Email Page Email Page Print Page Print Page Increase Font Size Decrease Font Size Font Size
America's 50 Best Hospitals
Meet the Doctor
Spirit of Women
Community Health Needs Assessment
Home > Health Information

Multimedia Encyclopedia

    Print-Friendly
    Bookmarks

    Rectal prolapse

    Rectal prolapse occurs when the rectum falls down and comes through the anal opening.

    Causes

    Rectal prolapse occurs most often in children under age 6 and in the elderly.

    In children, it can be found with cystic fibrosis and whipworm (trichuriasis).

    In adults, it is usually found with constipation. It is also more common in people with autism, psychiatric disorders, and intellectual disability.

    Symptoms

    The main symptom is a reddish-colored mass that sticks out from the opening of the anus, especially following a bowel movement. This reddish mass is actually the inner lining of the rectum. It may bleed slightly and can be uncomfortable and painful.

    Exams and Tests

    The health care provider will perform a physical exam, which may include a rectal exam. Tests can determine the underlying cause.

    Treatment

    Call your health care provider if a rectal prolapse occurs. In some cases, the prolapse can be treated at home.

    The rectum must be pushed back inside manually. A soft, warm, wet cloth is used to apply gentle pressure to the mass to push it back through the anal opening. The affected person should be lying down on his or her side in a knee-chest position before applying pressure to allow gravity to help return the prolapse.

    Immediate surgery for repair is seldom needed. In children, treating the underlying condition usually solves the problem. In adults, the only cure for rectal prolapse is an operation.

    Outlook (Prognosis)

    In children, treating the underlying condition usually cures the problem. In adults, surgery is usually successful at curing the prolapse.

    Constipation and loss of bowel control may also develop.

    When to Contact a Medical Professional

    Call your health care provider promptly if there is a rectal prolapse.

    Prevention

    In children, treating the underlying condition usually prevents further rectal prolapse. Treating vascular constipation is an important preventive measure.

    References

    Lembo AJ, Ullman SP. Constipation. In: Feldman M, Friedman LS, Brandt LJ, eds. Sleisinger & Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease. 9th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saudners Elsevier;2010:chap 18.

    Fry RD, Mahmoud N, Maron DJ, Ross HM, Bleir JIS. Colon and rectum. In: Townsend CM Jr., Beauchamp RD, Evers BM, Mattox KL, eds. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery. 19th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 52.

    Verma M, Rafferty J, Buie WD. Practice parameters for the management of rectal prolapse. Dis Colon Rectum. 2011;54:1339-1346.

    BACK TO TOP

    • Rectal prolapse

      illustration

    • Rectal prolapse repair ...

      Presentation

      • Rectal prolapse

        illustration

      • Rectal prolapse repair ...

        Presentation

      A Closer Look

        Self Care

          Tests for Rectal prolapse

            Review Date: 8/17/2012

            Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington; and Joshua Kunin, MD, Consulting Colorectal Surgeon, Zichron Yaakov, Israel. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc.

            The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
            adam.com

            A.D.A.M. content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Fire Fox and chrome browser.


            Back  |  Top
            About Us
            Contact Us
            History
            Mission
            Locations & Directions
            Quality Reports
            Annual Reports
            Honors & Awards
            Community Health Needs
            Assessment

            Newsroom
            Services
            Brain & Spine
            Cancer
            Heart
            Maternity
            Orthopedics
            Pulmonary
            Sleep Medicine
            Urgent Care
            Women's Services
            All Services
            Patients & Visitors
            Locations & Directions
            Find a Physician
            Tour St. Luke's
            Patient & Visitor Information
            Contact Us
            Payment Options
            Financial Assistance
            Send a Card
            Mammogram Appointments
            Health Tools
            My Personal Health
            mystlukes
            Spirit of Women
            Health Information & Tools
            Clinical Trials
            Health Risk Assessments
            Employer Programs -
            Passport to Wellness

            Classes & Events
            Classes & Events
            Spirit of Women
            Donate & Volunteer
            Giving Opportunities
            Volunteer
            Physicians & Employees
            For Physicians
            Remote Access
            Medical Residency Information
            Pharmacy Residency Information
            Physician CPOE Training
            Careers
            Careers
            St. Luke's Hospital - 232 South Woods Mill Road - Chesterfield, MO 63017 Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
            Copyright © St. Luke's Hospital Website Terms and Conditions  |  Privacy Policy  |  Patient Notice of Privacy Policies PDF Sitemap St. Luke's Mobile