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How to Stop UC Bleeding

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Ulcerative Colitis (UC) is an Inflammatory Bowel Disease impacting the gastrointestinal tract, specifically the colon. While there are various subtypes of Ulcerative Colitis, most include the symptom of blood in the stool, which can be frightening to experience. 

WARNING: If you are reading this article because you have had ten or more severe bloody stools in one day, feel faint, dizzy, like you may pass out, if you are vomiting blood, or hemorrhaging (severe blood loss), seek emergency care immediately.

Causes of Bleeding in Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative Colitis affects the lining of the large intestine (the colon) and the rectum. Ulcers and sores form along the lining of the rectum and may bleed with or without a bowel movement. They may be further irritated with each bowel motion creating pain and bleeding. 

Since we need to eat to survive, the bowel gets little opportunity to completely rest and repair. This can perpetuate the cycle of inflammation and unfortunately, bleeding. However, there are multiple other causes driving continued inflammation, and while fasting may temporarily reduce symptoms, it by no means can heal the colon and is not recommended as a treatment approach. 

Other symptoms of UC include abdominal pain and cramping, unexplained bouts of diarrhea, frequent bowel motions and urgency (difficulty in holding up defecation), weight loss, puss in the stool, and fever. 

Blood from the bowel may be a sign of other issues, whether more mundane such as hemorrhoids, or graver indications such as polyps or cancer. For this reason, receiving a correct medical diagnosis is crucial.  

Ways to Stop and Treat the Bleeding

Conventional treatments to stop bleeding usually address the ongoing inflammation and aim to abate it through immunosuppressive, anti-inflammatory, surgical, or superficial temporizing interventions. These include: 

  • Corticosteroids.
  • Immunosuppressants.
  • In severe cases, surgery may be required to remove part or all of the bowel. 
  • Anti-inflammatory medications such as mesalamine. 
  • Changes to diet are recommended. These include increasing fiber to prevent constipation, as constipation leads to further bleeding by hemorrhoids. Fiber and unprocessed diet have also been shown to reduce inflammation and its consequent bleeding. However, during attacks with blood, fiber is to be avoided. 
  • A warm bath may temporarily relieve symptoms of fissures and hemorrhoids, which can also cause bleeding. You can add Epsom salt or an oat milk pack to soften the water and soothe the skin. 
  • A hemorrhoid cream to soothe pain. A homeopathic cream called Traumeel or Calendula baby cream may also be used.
  • Exercise can help stimulate bowel movement. 

Natural Remedies for UC Bleeding  

Recent developments in UC treatment include Qing Dai (Indigo), an anti-inflammatory herbal formula used widely in Traditional Chinese Medicine to clear heat, clean out toxins, and relieve gastrointestinal bleeding. Curcumin has also been shown effective in more mild cases of UC.

A 2024 placebo-controlled trial tested a combination of these two herbal compounds (CurQD®) for UC and reported not only significant remission rates, but the elimination of rectal bleeding in over 50% of patients, which strikingly occurred as quickly as 12 days after initiation of therapy and sometimes faster. 

While Qing Dai is a potent remedy for intestinal inflammation, the formula must be used with caution, in medically approved doses, and for a limited timeframe. If you or a loved one are interested in trying Qing Dai for UC, simply take our free online assessment to receive a tailored plan for your specific needs.  

Foods to Avoid during Episodes of UC

All inflammatory foods should be avoided. These include:

  • Highly processed and refined foods.
  • Seed oils and fried foods.
  • Alcohol.
  • Soda’s and fruit juice high in sugar.
  • Refined sugar.
  • Dairy products if you have sensitivity
  • Gluten products should be avoided with the exception of sour-dough spelt bread, organic where possible, and in moderation.
  • Vegetables and fruit that irritate the gut, such as tomato skin, capsicum skin, and the deadly nightshade family of vegetables. 
  • Dried fruits
  • Unsoaked beans, legumes, nuts and grains.

When to Seek Medical Care 

Ulcerative Colitis is a serious condition that may often require medical care. While mild episodes may be treated at home, a severe flare with more than ten bloody stools, hemorrhaging, dizziness, or feeling faint must be treated urgently. An unexplained fever for two or more days may indicate an infection. 

The blood from UC is usually crimson red like the color of blood from an open wound or cut. If you see dark or black blood in your stool, it may be coming from higher up in the digestive tract and a medical doctor should be consulted for the correct diagnosis.

Rebecca Bermeister

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Rebecca Bermeister

DISCLAIMER

This blog is not intended to provide diagnosis, treatment, or medical advice. The content provided is for informational purposes only. Please consult with a physician or healthcare professional regarding any medical or health related diagnosis or treatment options. The claims made regarding specific products in this blog are not approved to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.

Rebecca Bermeister

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Reviewed by Prof. Shomron Ben-Horin M.D.

Co-founder & Chief Medical Officer of Evinature, Chief of the Gastroenterology Department & Director of the Gastro-Immunology Research Laboratory at Sheba Medical Center.

Currently a professor of Medicine at Tel Aviv University, Ben-Horin has been the President of the Israel IBD Society, a member of the Scientific Committee of the European Crohn’s & Colitis Organization (ECCO), and an Associate Editor of the Journal of Crohn & Colitis. He is currently a member of the prestigious International Organization of IBD (IOIBD), and a member of the Editorial Board of leading journals, Gut, JCC and APT.

Rebecca Bermeister

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