An anal, or rectal abscess occurs when a cavity in the anus becomes filled with pus. Most anal abscesses are a result of infection from small anal glands. It causes extreme pain, fatigue, rectal discharge, and fever.
About 50% of patients with an anal abscess will develop a complication called a fistula. A fistula is a small tunnel that makes an abnormal connection between the site of the abscess and the skin.
In some cases, an anal fistula causes persistent drainage. In other cases, where the outside of the tunnel opening closes, the result may be recurrent anal abscesses. Surgery is needed to cure almost all anal fistulas.
4 types of rectal abscess
Depending upon their anatomic location, rectal abscesses are classified into 4 types (this classification is important for the treating doctor and maybe difficult to understand as a patient):
. Perianal: Most common type
. Ischiorectal: May spread to the opposite side to form a horseshoe abscess
. Intersphincteric: Extremely painful
. Supralevator: Least common type
Anal Abscess causes
Perirectal and perianal abscesses are thought to develop from the glands surrounding the anus; on occasion, perianal abscesses may develop from infected skin adjacent to the anus. Glands may plug up, usually leading to bacterial infection. When the glands fill with pus, they may burst inward, releasing their infected contents into the spaces around the rectum and anus. This pus causes an abscess, or pus collection, in the spaces surrounding the rectum or anus. The anal abscess may enlarge, causing pain, fever, and difficulty with bowel movements.
Who is at the risk of Anal Abscess?
Certain people are more likely to develop perirectal and perianal abscesses, including those with the following medical conditions:
. AIDS or HIV infection with low white blood cell counts
. Crohn's disease
. Persons on medications that suppress the body's immune system, such as steroids (prednisone, methylprednisolone), or those undergoing chemotherapy for cancer.
. Placement of foreign bodies into the anus
. Sexually transmitted diseases
. Anal fissures
. Use of the medication prednisone or other steroids
. Anal sex, which can increase the risk of anal abscesses in both men and women
For adults, using condoms during sexual intercourse, including anal intercourse, can help prevent anal abscesses. For infants and toddlers, frequent diaper changes and proper cleaning during diaper changes can help prevent anal fistulas and perianal abscesses.
Anal Abscess symptoms
Signs and symptoms of perirectal and perianal abscesses include the following:
. Pain in the anal area or buttocks
. Pus drainage near the anus
. A lump in the anal area
. Painful bowel movements
. Lower abdominal pain
. Swelling in the anal area or buttocks
. Night sweats
Diagnosis of Anal Abscesses
Usually, a clinical evaluation -- including a digital rectal exam -- is sufficient to diagnose an anal abscess. But some patients may require additional tests to screen for:
. Sexually transmitted infections
. Inflammatory bowel disease
. Diverticular disease
. Rectal cancer
In rare cases, an examination may be done under anesthesia. The doctor may also ask for an ultrasound, a CT scan, or an MRI.
Treatment of Anal Abscesses in Iran
Prompt surgical drainage is important, preferably before the abscess erupts. Superficial anal abscesses can be drained in a doctor's office using a local anesthetic. Large or deeper anal abscesses may require hospitalization and the assistance of an anesthesiologist.
After the procedure, most people are prescribed medications for pain relief. For otherwise healthy people, antibiotics are usually not needed. Antibiotics may be required, though, for some people, including those with diabetes or decreased immunity.
Sometimes, fistula surgery can be performed at the same time as abscess surgery. However, fistulas often develop four to six weeks after an abscess is drained. Sometimes a fistula may not occur until months or even years later. So fistula surgery is usually a separate procedure that can be performed on an outpatient basis or with a short hospital stay.
After abscess or fistula surgery, discomfort is usually mild and can be controlled with pain medications. People can expect to lose only a minimal amount of time from work or school.
People are usually advised to soak the affected area in a warm water (sitz) bath three or four times per day. Stool softeners may be recommended to ease the discomfort of bowel movements. Some people may be advised to wear a gauze pad or mini-pad to prevent the drainage from soiling their clothes.
After an anal abscess or fistula has properly healed, it's unlikely that the problem will come back. To prevent one from doing so, however, it's important to follow the advice of your doctor or colon and rectal surgeon.
Complications after surgery
. Anal fissure
. An abscess returning
Ways to prevent anal abscesses
There isn’t much known about how to prevent anal abscess. But there are some steps you can take, including:
. Protection against STIs and prompt treatment is important for any infection.
. Condom use, especially during anal sex, is key in preventing STIs that may cause anal abscesses.
. Good hygiene and cleanliness in the anal area is an important safeguard for both children and adults.
Anal abscesses can cause complications, but they’re treatable. Understand the risk factors and make sure to closely monitor and manage any health conditions that may increase risk. If you notice anal problems, contact your doctor to get treatment and to prevent them from becoming worse.
Perianal abscess treatment cost in Iran
The cost of incision and drainage of perirectal abscess (performed in hospital) starts from $ 440.
10 common Questions about anal abscess search
1What causes rectal abscess?
A blocked anal gland, a sexually transmitted infection (STI), or an infected anal fissure can cause anal abscesses. Some other risk factors include: Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, which are inflammatory bowel diseases that cause the body to attack healthy tissue. diabetes.
2Can rectal abscess heal on its own?
Fortunately, superficial fissures usually heal quickly with medical treatment, and most symptoms disappear within a few days to a couple of weeks. Anal abscess - An anal abscess sometimes drains on its own, although it is always safer for a doctor to evaluate the problem.
3How long does it take for a rectal abscess to heal?
about 2 to 3 weeks
But you may have some mild pain in your anal area from the incision for several days after the surgery. Most people can go back to work or their normal routine 1 or 2 days after surgery. It will probably take about 2 to 3 weeks for your abscess to completely heal. Most people get better without any problems.
4Can perianal abscess be treated without surgery?
Many naturally start to drain and heal, but some may need treatment with frequent baths and antibiotics. Others may need to be treated with a small operation. Some perianal abscesses may not heal completely, with or without surgery. This can cause a tiny opening to develop where the abscess had been draining.
5Can an abscess go away without draining?
Some small skin abscesses may drain naturally and get better without the need for treatment. ... If a skin abscess isn't drained, it may continue to grow and fill with pus until it bursts, which can be very painful and can cause the infection to spread or recur.
6Is a perianal abscess serious?
Most anal abscesses are a result of infection from small anal glands. The most common type of abscess is a perianal abscess. This often appears as a painful boil-like swelling near the anus. ... About 50% of patients with an anal abscess will develop a complication called a fistula.
7What are the first signs of an abscess?
Signs of a skin abscess can include:
a smooth swelling under your skin that can feel hard or firm.
pain and tenderness in the affected area.
warmth and redness in the affected area.
a visible build-up of white or yellow pus under the skin in the affected area.
a high temperature (fever)
8How do you get rid of an abscess at home?
Abscess Treatment: Self-Care at Home
If the abscess is small (less than 1 cm or less than a half-inch across), applying warm compresses to the area for about 30 minutes 4 times daily may help.
Do not attempt to drain the abscess by squeezing or pressing on it.
9Can you die from an abscess?
It's not so much that you'll die of pain, of course, but dentists and research confirm that an untreated abscess can infect other parts of the body, either through the bones or the bloodstream. Most people won't die from a toothache, but it's a condition that if left untreated can lead to the worst: a fatal result.
10Is a perianal abscess an emergency?
Anal Abscess Facts
By contrast, a perianal abscess is a shallower collection of pus under the skin surrounding the anus; however, both are sometimes described as an anal abscess. Both types of abscesses need immediate medical attention; however, a perirectal abscess usually is the more severe infection.