Suffering from Anal Fissure and want to get rid of it? Do you know, Anal Fissure is ranked at no.3 position in category of diseases relating to rectum? Let’s get familiar with Anal Fissure.
An Anal Fissure is a tear or break in the skin which extends from muscles that control the anus up into the anal canal. Although it does not cause any serious problems, but it carries along pain during defecation and bowel movements. It is a common problem and can occur in people of all the ages. The anal fissures is acute when it lasts for less than six weeks, it becomes chronic when it goes beyond six weeks.
What causes Anal Fissure?
Whenever an anal canal gets injured or witnesses the trauma, it gives rise to anal fissure. In following points we will discuss in detail how anal canal gets affected.
- Constipation or Diarrhea- The most common cause of trauma is bowel movement. Anal fissures can be caused by repeated episodes of diarrhea or hard stool. As documented in a book named Anal Fissure, According to Fischl (1927), in more than 50% of all the patients with constipation, anal fissure is the sole reason of their disorder.
- Medical Examination- Insertion of ultrasound probe, rectal thermometer and endoscope can lead to enough traumas for the development of an anal fissure.
- Child Birth- Child Birth can also be the reason for anal fissure as a trauma occurs in perineum tissue when a woman gives birth to child.
- Viral Infections- Viral Infections like HIV, TB, herpes, gonorrhea, syphilis, chancroid also cause anal fissure. Sexually transmitted disease can promote the breakdown of the tissue resulting into anal fissure.
Symptoms of Anal Fissure
- Pain during bowel movements. The pain can be so severe that patients are unwilling to have a bowel movement which eventually results in constipation. Constipation can further result in passage of harder tool causing trauma and more pain.
- Blood on surface of stool or blood on used toilet paper may occur due to discharge of pus from fissure.
- A visible tear in the anus.
- Anal itching and burning
- Difficulty in passing urine.
Diagnosis of Anal Fissure
The symptoms mentioned above will alert the doctor to follow a simple examination and usually a gentle inspection of the anus can confirm the presence of a fissure. Doctor will look for a small tear by gently pulling apart the edges of anus and if separating the buttocks does not reveal a fissure, a more vigorous examination can be performed by the doctor. Before proceeding with further examinations, doctors use a topical anesthetic creams to numb the affected area so that you don’t feel any pain. Procedures such as colonoscopy, flexible sigmoidoscopy can be performed by doctor to further dig the cause of blood loss.
Prevention is better than cure
Anal Fissure at an early stage usually does not require any kind of hospitalization. The sufferer can follow the following tips in this initial stage:
- Avoid eating fried, spicy and salty food;
- Refrain from drinking alcoholic beverages;
- Promptly treat constipation and diarrhea;
- Avoid lifting heavy objects;
- Liquid intake should be increased;
- Sitz baths are encouraged, especially after bowel movements.
Treatment to be followed for Anal Fissure
Anal fissures often heal in little time if the above mentioned precautions are well taken care but if your symptoms still persists, a medical treatment is recommended. Doctors usually take two approaches, Non-Surgical treatments followed by surgical treatments.
- Application of Nitroglycerin- It is used to accelerate the blood flow to fissure which promote the healing process.
- Blood Pressure Medications- Medications such as nifedipine or diltiazem can help relax the anal sphincter. These medications maybe taken by mouth or applied externally.
- Topical anesthetic creams- These are numbing creams which are helpful for the pain relief. Dr.Numb® is one of the best topical anesthetic creams available in market which can be a great help to you.
- Botulinum toxin type A (Botox) Injection- It is used to paralyze the anal sphincter muscle and relax spasms.
If the chronic anal fissure is resistant to all other treatments, a doctor may suggest a surgical treatment to get rid of a anal fissure. The surgery is named as a lateral internal sphincterotomy (LIS), involves making a small cut in the anal sphincter muscle. It reduces pain and pressure, allowing the fissure to heal. Studies have revealed that for chronic fissure, surgery is much more effective than any medical treatment.
The pain from surgery will be less than the pain you suffer from fissure so it’s worth bearing the surgical pain to say a good bye to your anal fissure.