A child with his mum in the hospital but happy.

Solitary Rectal Ulcer Syndrome (SRUS)

It is a benign condition that causes a single ulcer to form in the lower rectum. While more common in young adults, it can occur in children, though less frequently.

Here’s some information about SRUS:

  • Causes: The exact cause of SRUS is unknown, but it’s thought to be related to straining during bowel movements. Other possible contributing factors include constipation, pelvic floor dysfunction, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

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 The most common symptoms of SRUS include:

    • Rectal bleeding, usually bright red blood streaked on stool or toilet paper
    • Mucus discharge from the rectum
    • Tenesmus, a persistent feeling of needing to have a bowel movement, even after having one
    • Straining during bowel movements
    • Abdominal pain
    • A feeling of incomplete bowel evacuation


SRUS can be diagnosed through a combination of tests, including:

    • Colonoscopy: This procedure allows a doctor to examine the inside of the rectum and colon for ulcers or other abnormalities. A biopsy, where a small tissue sample is taken, may also be done during a colonoscopy to confirm the diagnosis.
    • Stool tests: These tests can rule out other causes of rectal bleeding, such as infection or inflammatory bowel disease.
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 There is no cure for SRUS, but treatment can help manage symptoms and improve quality of life. Treatment options include:

      • Lifestyle changes: Increasing fiber intake, using stool softeners, and avoiding straining during bowel movements can all help to reduce symptoms.
      • Medications: Medications such as topical mesalamine (5-ASA) suppositories or enemas may help to reduce inflammation and promote healing.
      • Biofeedback: Biofeedback can help patients learn how to relax their pelvic floor muscles, which can reduce straining during bowel movements.

If you are concerned that a 12-year-old boy you encountered might have SRUS, it is important to consult with a doctor or gastroenterologist for proper diagnosis and treatment.

paediatric doctor