Anal Fissure Specialist

Michael Tarlowe, MD -  - Proctologist

Michael Tarlowe, MD

Proctologist & General Surgeon located in White Plains, NY & Upper East Side, New York, NY

An anal fissure can be a painful condition, but Michael H. Tarlowe, MD, is proficient in many different procedures that can treat them effectively. If you’re suffering from an anal fissure, don’t delay. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Tarlowe in Upper East Side Manhattan, New York City, or White Plains, New York, today by calling the office or using the convenient online booking tool.

Anal Fissure Q & A

What is an anal fissure?

An anal fissure is a small tear or cut in the tissue lining your anus. They can happen to a person at any age, but they’re more common with younger children and infants because they tend to experience constipation more frequently. 

Anal fissures typically heal on their own within 4-6 weeks, but they can sometimes persist longer. If an anal fissure lasts for more than eight weeks, it’s considered chronic. 

 

What causes an anal fissure?

Anal fissures are most frequently caused by passing stools that are particularly large or hard, but some other possible causes include:

Anal sphincter muscles that are spastic or tight
Reduced blood flow in your anorectal area
Excessive strain during a bowel movement or childbirth

Anal fissures can also develop as a result of other medical conditions, like:

  • Herpes
  • Syphilis
  • Tuberculosis
  • HIV
  • Anal cancer

 

Crohn’s disease and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) can frequently cause anal fissures. 

 

What symptoms accompany an anal fissure?

The most common symptom of an anal fissure is a visible tear in the skin around your anus. Other symptoms that might accompany an anal fissure include:

Pain in your anus, especially during bowel movements
Bleeding during and/or after a bowel movement
Itching or burning sensations around your anus

Some patients also develop a skin tag, or a small mass of skin, near their anal fissure. 

 

How do you treat an anal fissure?

First, Dr. Tarlowe performs an exam to determine whether you have an anal fissure. He can typically do this with a simple visual exam around your anus. Still, depending on the location and extent of your fissure, he might need to perform a rectal exam, which involves inserting a thin tube (anoscope) into your rectum so he can get a better view of the tear. 

If Dr. Tarlowe diagnoses you with an anal fissure, he might recommend any one of several treatments, including:

  • Using over-the-counter stool softeners
  • Drinking more fluids
  • Eating more fiber or taking fiber supplements
  • Calcium channel blocker ointment
  • Injections of Botox® into your anal sphincter to reduce muscle spasms

 

If your anal fissure doesn’t resolve with these more conservative treatments, Dr. Tarlowe can perform a surgery called anal sphincterotomy, where he makes a small incision in your anal sphincter. The incision helps your muscles to relax, which gives your fissure time to heal.

To learn more about patient prepatrations for upcoming procedures, click here.

 

Get treatment for your anal fissure today by scheduling an appointment with Dr. Tarlowe. Book your visit by phone today or request a consultation online.