James D. Lewis, MD
Last Modified: November 1, 2001
Dear OncoLink "Ask the Experts,"
Can hemorrhoids lead to rectal or colon cancer?
James D. Lewis, MD, MSCE, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Senior Scholar at the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and Senior Fellow in the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics at the University of Pennsylvania, responds:
There is no reason to believe that hemorrhoids lead to colorectal cancer. However, the symptoms of hemorrhoids are often similar to those of colorectal cancer or anal cancer. Some symptoms of hemorrhoids include:
blood in the stool
blood on the stool
blood in the toilet bowl
blood on the tissue paper
As such, it is important to see your doctor to have these symptoms evaluated. If you are concerned about of have any of these symptoms you should see your physician for an examination.