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Encyclopedia > Digital rectal exam

A rectal examination or rectal exam is an internal examination of the rectum by a physician.


The digital rectal examination (DRE) is the simplest procedure. The patient is placed in a position where the anus is accessible and relaxed (lying on the side, squatting on the examination table, bent over the examination table, etc). The physician inserts a gloved and lubricated finger into the rectum through the anus and palpates the insides.


This examination may be used:


  Results from FactBites:
 
Rectal examination - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (287 words)
A rectal examination or rectal exam is an internal examination of the rectum by a physician or other healthcare professional.
The DRE is inadequate as a screening tool for colorectal cancer because it examines less than 10% of the colorectal mucosa; coloscopy is preferred.
The DRE is frequently combined with a FOBT (fecal occult blood test), which may be useful for diagnosing the etiology of an anemia and/or confirming a gastrointestinal bleed.
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