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Anal Fissure Surgery Overview

Anal fissure surgery is a medical procedure often recommended to address severe pain stemming from a tear in the lining of the lower rectum. A tear, or fissure, in this area of the body can cause extreme pain, especially during bowel movements. Though some anal fissures can heal on their own accord or with the assistance of over-the-counter remedies such as stool softeners and topical analgesics, others can cause pain for weeks and ultimately require surgical intervention.

There are many different types of anal fissure surgery. The following is a brief description of the most common surgical options:

  • Lateral internal sphincterotomy – For persons with chronic anal fissure problems, a lateral internal sphincterotomy has proven to be highly effective. Carried out under either local or general anesthesia, this procedure entails a small incision in the interior sphincter muscle to help the fissure heal.
  • Anal advancement flap – This procedure involves taking healthy, well-vascularized tissue from another part of the body and using it to help an anal fissure heal more quickly.

Following anal fissure surgery, it’s important to be patient, as pain may persist for a few weeks. Though it is normal for bowel movements to be painful during the recovery period, the pain can be mitigated through stool softeners, laxatives, and sitz bath therapy, or soaks in a warm tub.

Anal fissure surgery is one of many procedures performed at Tampa General Hospital’s Endoscopy Center. We tailor treatments to each patient’s individual diagnosis with the ultimate goal of improving quality of life.

TGH has been named one of America’s Best Hospitals in Gastroenterology & GI Surgery by U.S. News & World Report for 2017-18. To find a colon and rectal surgeon who performs anal fissure surgery, access Tampa General Hospital’s Physician Finder or call 1-800-833-3627.