An anal abscess is an infected cavity filled with pus found near the anus or rectum. Ninety percent of abscesses are the result of an acute infection in the internal glands of the anus. Occasionally, bacteria, fecal material or foreign matter can clog an anal gland and tunnel into the tissue around the anus or rectum, where it may then collect in a cavity called an abscess.
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WHAT IS AN ANAL ABSCESS OR FISTULA?
Most anal fistulas form in reaction to an anal gland that has developed a pus-filled infection abscess. Even if your abscess drains on its own, you have about the same risk for a fistula. Certain conditions that affect your lower digestive tract or anal area may also increase your risk. These include:. The specialist will ask about your symptoms and your medical history. During your physical exam, the doctor will look for a fistula opening near your anal opening. He or she may press on the area to see if it is sore and if pus comes out. Different methods may be used to help with the diagnosis, such as:.
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An anal fistula is an abnormal tube-like connection that forms between the inside of the anus at the anal gland and the skin right outside the anus. Think of it as a tunnel. The abscess that causes the fistula is quite painful. It can cause intense pain and swelling around the anus. This pain gets worse with bowel movements.