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Angiodysplasia of the colon

  • Alternative Names

    Vascular ectasia of the colon; Colonic arteriovenous malformation


    Symptoms

    The symptoms vary. Often, in elderly patients, the symptoms are weakness, fatigue, and shortness of breath due to anemia. There may not be any signs of bleeding directly from the colon. Others may have occasional mild or severe bleeding episodes with bright red blood coming from the rectum.

    There is no pain associated with angiodysplasia.


    Signs and tests

    Tests that may be done to diagnose this condition include:

    • Angiography (only useful if there is active bleeding into the colon)
    • Complete blood count (CBC) to check for anemia
    • Colonoscopy
    • Stool test for occult (hidden) blood (a positive test result suggests bleeding from the colon)