Health A-Z

Medical Content Created by the Faculty of the Harvard Medical School



  • Bleeding from the anus or rectum (can be minor)

  • Itching in the anal area

  • Pain in the anal area

  • Abnormal discharge from the anus

  • Change in size of bowel movements (stool may become more narrow)

  • Lump near the anus

  • Swollen lymph nodes in the anal/groin area

Talk to your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms. Other conditions that are not cancer (such as hemorrhoids) may cause similar symptoms.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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