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Updated January 26, 2014

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

Definition: Proctitis is the medical term for inflammation of the rectum. Although proctitis can have non-infectious causes, it may also be the result of rectal infection with certain sexually transmitted diseases including chlamydia and gonorrhea, as well as herpes, syphillis and lymphogranuloma venereum. Symptoms may include rectal bleeding, diarrhea, passing mucus in your stool, pain during bowel movements, and a frequent or urgent need to have a bowel movement.

The risk of infection-related proctitis can be reduced by using condoms for anal sex.

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