Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer).
The rectum is part of the large intestine and is placed between the sigmoid colon and the anal canal. It stores stools before excretion via the anus. Rectal problems are common and include haemorrhoids, abscesses, incontinence and cancer.