Vaginal Bleeding with Bowel Movement

By Dr. Vik, MBBS, MRCP(GB), PhD
Vaginal bleeding with bowel movement

In order to maintain optimum health, it is important to have a normally functioning bowel. Normal bowel movements depend on a number of factors, including a good diet and regular exercise.

In women, the genitourinary tract, i.e. the bladder and reproductive system, are placed in close proximity to each other.

While rare, there have been cases reported where women notice bleeding from their vaginal when they attempt a bowel movement.

The Link Between Vaginal Bleeding and Bowel Movements

It is well recognized that patients who suffer from constipation tend to strain a lot in order to move their bowels.

Constipation can play a part in a number of different clinical conditions. In fact, there are nearly 32 conditions where patients may experience vaginal bleeding due to constipation (WebMD, 2014).

Hemorrhoids may give a false indication

Constant straining over a period of time can lead to the enlargement of the hemorrhoidal veins in the rectum.

Hemorrhoids can bleed on occasion, and sometimes this may be misinterpreted as vaginal bleeding.


Ways that Constipation Can Cause Vaginal Bleeding

  1. The straining action can increase pressure in the cervix, causing small blood vessels to rupture on its delicate surface.

  2. The presence of a small polyp on the cervix can sometimes cause bleeding from the vagina when attempting to have a bowel movement. The increased pressure causes a rupturing of capillaries on the surface of the polyp.

  3. There exists in medicine a condition called rectocoele. This is where the front wall of the rectum bulges into the vagina. The rectocele can place a great deal of stress on the wall of the vagina. One of the causes of a rectocele is constipation and constant straining to defecate.

  4. During pregnancy, the straining action of a bowel movement can place pressure on the wall of the vagina, which may damage and rupture blood vessels. This can lead to a small amount of bleeding from the vagina during a bowel movement (NYU Medical Center, 2014). 

  5. During pregnancy, there may be times when the cervix becomes rather delicate. Straining to defecate at such a time can cause bleeding from the surface of the cervix. This can appear as vaginal bleeding.

  6. Other causes include infections, polyps of the cervix and fibroids.

Managing Vaginal Bleeding

Associated with Bowel Movements

Clearly, constipation seems to be the underlying problem that is common to all causes of abnormal vaginal bleeding. Therefore, targeting constipation is important.

Nutrients that help reduce constipation

One of the most important causes of constipation is the lack of fiber and nutrients in one’s diet. One such nutrient is magnesium

While fiber supplements are readily available, it seems the American population gets a surprisingly low level of magnesium in their diets.

Some doctors and researchers are now advising that individuals take a high quality magnesium supplement to meet this need. This may actually result in numerous health benefits

The primary benefit of magnesium during defectation is that it softens stools making them extremely easy to pass (Guerrera, 2009). It works by pulling water into the colon, thereby increasing the softness of the stools.

When stools are soft, there is no straining effort needed. This tremendously reduces the amount of stress on the wall of the vaginal. It is for this very reason that magnesium is used to clear out the bowel loops prior to bowel surgery (WebMD, 2014).

Conclusion, vaginal bleeding with bowel movement

Vaginal bleeding during a bowel movement is primarily due to constipation. For most women, ensuring easy bowel movements is effective in remedying the problem.

Works Cited

Guerrera, M. P. (2009). Therapeutic uses of magnesium. American Family Physician, 157-162.

NYU Medical Center. (2014). Rectocele. Retrieved from MYU Langone Medical Center:

WebMD. (2014, November). Constipation and Vaginal bleeding between periods. Retrieved from WebMD:|vaginal-bleeding-between-periods&symptomids=58|247&locations=24|35

WebMD. (2014). Magnesium. Retrieved from WebMD:

(Return from Vaginal Bleeding with Bowel Movement to Dangers of Constipation)

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