Radiation proctopathy can be a disabling delayed outcome of radiation therapy directed at pelvic malignancies. Rectal outlet bleeding can be severe enough to result in anemia and transfusion dependency. Bleeding typically develops from 6 months to 1 year after completion of radiation therapy and is caused by friable mucosal angioectasias. Although many approaches to controlling bleeding from chronic radiation proctopathy have been attempted, ranging from topical enema formulations to surgical diversion of the rectum, endoscopic coagulation therapy remains the most effective. This review provides the background issues surrounding the development of chronic bleeding radiation proctopathy and focuses on endoscopic methods of treatment.
- Lower gastrointestinal bleeding
- Vascular ectasias
ASJC Scopus subject areas