Everything You Need to Know About Anal Fissures

Female Surgeon
6 min readJan 16

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Learn about anal fissures here. We cover symptoms, causes, risks, complications, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. Knowing about this condition helps you manage and prevent it.

What is an Anal Fissure?

Anal fissures are tears in the anus. They happen from constipation, diarrhea, and injury. If not treated, they can cause pain and other health issues. So, it is important to be aware of the warning signs and to seek medical attention should they occur.

Anal Fissure Symptoms in UAE:

- Pain during bowel movements

- Bright red blood on toilet paper or in the toilet bowl

- Pain that may last for several hours after bowel movements

-A visible tear or split in the skin around the anus

- Itching or burning sensation around the anus

-A feeling of needing to have a bowel movement that does not go away

- Constipation or difficulty passing stool

- Formation of skin tags around the anus

-Pain during intercourse -Fecal incontinence

Remember, not all symptoms may show, and see a doctor for advice.

Anal fissure causes UAE

- Chronic constipation: Straining during bowel movements can cause small tears in the anus.

-Diarrhea: stools can cause irritation and damage to the anus.

-Childbirth: Pregnancy and delivery can cause damage to the muscles and tissue in the anus.

-Anal injury: Trauma or injury to the anus can cause fissures.

- Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis: Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are two types of IBD. Crohn’s affects the gut. Ulcerative colitis only affects the colon. Both cause pain, diarrhea, and weight loss. Treat Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis with medicine, changes, and surgery if needed.

-Certain medications: Certain medications can help prevent and treat anal fissures. Use creams and ointments that relax the anus muscles and help the fissure heal. Some examples of these medications include nitroglycerin, nifedipine, and diltiazem. Other medicines, like numbing creams, can help with the pain from anal fissures. Consult a doctor for the best plan for you.

-HIV/AIDS: People with HIV/AIDS are at a higher risk of developing anal fissures.

- Anal cancer: anal fissures can be a symptom of anal cancer.

Not all causes may be there. Consult a doctor for an accurate diagnosis.

Anal Fissure Risk Factors

  • Age: Anal fissures are more common in younger adults and older adults
  • Gender: Anal fissures are more common in women than men.
  • Pregnancy: Pregnant women are at a higher risk of developing anal fissures due to the increased pressure on the anus.
  • Chronic constipation: Constipation is hard to pass stools or rarely go to the bathroom often. This can lead to hard, dry stools that are difficult to pass, and can cause discomfort and pain. It can also cause bloating and gas. Many things can cause long-term constipation. For example, not eating enough fiber, not moving enough, health problems, and medicine. It can also be a symptom of a more serious underlying condition.
  • Diarrhea: Diarrhea is a condition where a person has loose, watery stools more than three times in a day. Reasons include infection, food poisoning, medicine, and health problems. Diarrhea can cause dehydration, abdominal cramps, and other symptoms. It’s important to drink fluids and avoid foods that can make diarrhea worse. In most cases, diarrhea is a short-term problem and will go away on its own. If pain lasts more than a few days or you have other symptoms, see a healthcare provider for help.
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD): People who have IBD like Crohn’s or Ulcerative colitis are more likely to get anal fissures.
  • HIV/AIDS: People with HIV/AIDS are at a higher risk of developing anal fissures.
  • Anal cancer: anal fissures can be a symptom of anal cancer.
  • Certain Medications: Certain medications can increase the risk of developing anal fissures.

Remember, not all risk factors may apply. Talk to a doctor for a proper diagnosis.

Complications of an Anal Fissure

Anal fissures are tears in the anus. They hurt and make you bleed during bowel movements. While they are generally not serious and can heal on their own, some complications can arise if they do not heal. These include:

  1. Chronic fissures: If a tear in the anus doesn’t heal in 6 to 8 weeks, it’s called a long-term fissure. Chronic fissures can be more difficult to treat and may must surgery.
  2. Anal stenosis: Repeated fissures can cause scar tissue, which can make the anus narrow. This makes it hard and painful to have bowel movements.
  3. Fecal incontinence: In rare cases, a fissure may damage the sphincter muscle, which controls bowel movements. This can lead to fecal incontinence.
  4. Abscess: If a fissure becomes infected, it can form an abscess, a pocket of pus that can cause severe pain and swelling.
  5. Fistula: A fissure can turn into a fistula. This is a connection between the anus and another organ like the skin or bladder. This is rare.

Seek medical help if you have anal fissure symptoms. Early treatment can prevent complications.

Diagnosis of an Anal Fissure

A doctor will look at the anus and nearby area during a check-up to find an anal fissure. They will look for any tears or splits on the skin and check for symptoms like pain, bleeding, or itching.

Doctors check for muscle spasms in the anal area with a test called a digital rectal exam. Sometimes, they may suggest other tests like an anoscope exam or proctosigmoidoscopy. This will provide a better view of the area and rule out other potential causes of your symptoms.

Doctors often diagnose anal fissures by looking at symptoms and doing a check-up. But sometimes, they may need more tests to be sure and rule out other issues.

Treatment of Anal Fissure

Treatment starts with simple steps: eat more fiber, drink more fluids, avoid constipation and use stool softeners.

Doctors often give Nitroglycerin or Calcium channel blockers to relax the sphincter muscle. Also, Botox injection into the muscle can help it relax and heal.

Surgical options exist for anal fissures that don’t heal with other methods. One such procedure is LIS, which cuts a bit of the muscle to decrease pressure and heal the fissure.

Some anal fissures happen due to medical conditions such as Crohn’s or IBD. Treat these conditions too.

Consult a doctor for a check-up. They may refer you to a specialist, like a proctologist. This procedure is for the diagnosis and treatment of anal fissures.

Prevention of an Anal Fissure

  1. visit the bathroom and avoid constipation. Prevent constipation by eating fiber, drinking water, and exercising. This will make bowel movements easier
  2. Avoid straining during bowel movements. Straining causes pressure on the anal canal which can lead to fissures.
  3. Keep the anal area clean. cleaning the area after bowel movements can help prevent infection and inflammation.
  4. Use a stool softener or a bulk-forming laxative if you are prone to constipation. These can make it easier to pass stools and reduce the need to strain.
  5. Avoid harsh toilet paper and instead, use baby wipes or medicated pads.
  6. Avoid prolonged sitting on the toilet.
  7. Stop activities that put extra pressure on the anus, like heavy lifting and cycling.

Top 10 facts, statistics, and trends related to Anal Fissures

  1. Anal fissures happen often and affect 1 out of 100 people. (Source: MedlinePlus, National Institutes of Health).
  2. Risk factors include constipation, diarrhea, and Crohn’s disease (Source: Mayo Clinic).
  3. Young people and women are more likely to get anal fissures. (Source: American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons).
  4. Symptoms include pain and bleeding during bowel movements (Source: Healthline).
  5. A doctor checks for anal fissures with a physical exam or tool called an anoscope. (Source: Mayo Clinic).
  6. Treat most anal fissures with fiber, fluid, warm baths, and ointments. (Source: MedlinePlus, National Institutes of Health).
  7. Severe cases may need surgery (Source: Mayo Clinic).
  8. Prevent anal fissures by having regular bowel movements and avoiding straining (Source: Healthline).
  9. Anal fissures can cause problems like loss of bowel control and narrow passages. (Source: American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons).
  10. People are working to find new treatments for anal fissures. (Source: MedlinePlus, National Institutes of Health).

Sources of Anal Fissures

Here are some reliable sources for information on anal fissures:

  1. Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/anal-fissure/symptoms-causes/syc-20351360
  2. MedlinePlus (National Institutes of Health): https://medlineplus.gov/analfissures.html
  3. American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons: https://www.fascrs.org/patients/disease-condition/anal-fissures
  4. Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/anal-fissure

These sources give you all the information you need about anal fissures. They explain the causes, and signs, how to diagnose it, ways to treat it, and how to stop it from happening again. By reading this, you can learn about anal fissures and make good decisions for your health.

Conclusion

Anal fissures can cause pain and embarrassment. Hard or big stools often hurt the anus, causing these conditions. But, there are ways to treat and prevent them. Treatments include medicine, changes in lifestyle, and surgery. To prevent them, eat more fiber and avoid constipation. If you have any doubts or think you have an anal fissure, talk to your doctor.

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