Perianal abscess, anal
abscess, or rectal abscess
- Stool formed in the colon or large
intestine empties into the rectum and the anal canal then
exits through the anus. Perianal refers to the structures
around the anus (skin) and within the anal canal. The walls
of the anal canal above the anus contain anal glands that
secrete lubricants. Stool contains waste material and many
bacteria. If there is a cut or scratch in the skin around
the anus or the walls of the anal canal, bacteria can enter
and cause an infection. The infection then causes local
swelling, irritation, tissue damage, and fluid buildup
- Unable to sit comfortably
- Difficulty or pain with passing
- Redness or pain around anus
- Abscess felt around anus or within
- Peri-rectal swelling
- Pain may be throbbing, sharp, or
- Fever may be seen in severe case
- Bleeding or discharge if abscess is
drained or accidentally ruptures.
- In elderly there maybe no fever
only lower abdominal pain
- If the abscess ruptures and leaves
a fissure that opens into the anal canal, a fistula is
- Proteus vulgaris
- Pseudemonas aeruginosa
- Usually a mixture of
- Need examination by a doctor
- If abscess is in the canal, the
doctor may need to insert his index finger in the canal
(digital rectal exam) and feel for it.
- If fever is present and the patient
appears sick, blood samples may be taken to assess the
severity of infection.
- Barium Enema -- an
enema used to pour a chalky substance called barium through
the anus into the rectum for X-raying. This will help if the
abscess cannot be felt, or if a fistula is present.
- Sigmoidoscopy -- a
rigid tube inserted into the rectum allows the doctor to look
- From food such as egg shell and
- Swallowed objects, such as rings, coins,
- Anal sex
- Light bulbs
- Surgical injection of hemorrhoids
- Hemorrhoids (hang out from
the anus opening)
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- Granulomatous diseases such as Sarcoidosis
- Weakened immune system (body's defenses) -- cancer (specially of blood), AIDS,
- May need admission to the hospital
if very sick, elderly, have other diseases or need surgery.
- Pain medication -- Tylenol, Motrin, Codeine.
- Stool softeners or laxatives to prevent Constipation.
- Good diet with high fiber diet --
adequate amount of oil, fruits, vegetables, and fruits.
- Avoid enemas and rectal
- Antibiotics may be administered
intravenously (through veins).
- Local small abscesses can be cut
and drained on an outpatient basis.
- Deeper abscess and fistulas need
to be opened, drained, and removed in the hospital under
- The wound is then packed with
gauze soaked in Iodoform, an anti-bacterial agent for
- Sitz baths are recommended every
2-4 hours to remove debris.
- Warm compresses help with
doctor for a digital rectal exam.