Rectal problems, including constipation, pain, leaking of
stool, or anal injury, may be caused by physical or sexual abuse that injures
the abdominal or rectal area. An injury to the vagina or rectum, or injury to
the abdomen, back, or lower spine can prevent normal bowel movements.
Home treatment is not appropriate for rectal problems that are caused by
abuse. Unreported abuse is likely to continue and will usually get worse. You
may feel uneasy if your doctor brings up the issue of abuse.
Health professionals have a professional duty and legal obligation to evaluate
the possibility of abuse.
If you think your child has been abused, there are resources available to help. Adults need to protect young children because
children cannot protect themselves.
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.