AIM To determine the value of computed tomographic angiography (CTA) for diagnosis and therapeutic planning in lower gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding. METHODS Sixty-three consecutive patients with acute lower GI bleeding underwent CTA before endovascular or surgical treatment. CTA was used to determine whether the lower GI bleeding was suitable for endovascular treatment, surgical resection, or conservative treatment in each patient. Treatment planning with CTA was compared with actual treatment decisions or endovascular or surgical treatment that had been carried out in each patient based on CTA findings. RESULTS 64-row CTA detected active extravasation of contrast material in 57 patients and six patients had no demonstrable active bleeding, resulting in an accuracy of 90.5% in the detection of acute GI bleeding (57 of 63). In three of the six patients with no demonstrable active bleeding, active lower GI bleeding recurred within one week after CTA, and angiography revealed acute bleeding. The overall location-based accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) for the detection of GI bleeding by 64-row CTA were 98.8% (249 of 252), 95.0% (57 of 60), 100% (192 of 192), 100% (57 of 57), and 98.5% (192 of 195), respectively. Treatment planning was correctly established on the basis of 64-row CTA with an accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of 98.4% (248 of 252), 93.3% (56 of 60), 100% (192 of 192), 100% (56 of 56), and 97.5% (192 of 196), respectively, in a location-based evaluation. CONCLUSION 64-row CTA is safe and effective in making decisions regarding treatment, without performing digital subtraction angiography or surgery, in the majority of patients with lower GI bleeding.