(Sphincterectomy, Anal; Surgery for Anal Fissures; Lateral Internal Sphincterotomy; LIS)
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Reasons for Procedure
- Eating a high-fiber diet
- Drinking plenty of fluids
- Using stool softeners
- Taking warm baths
- Using medications applied to the skin
- Inability to control the leakage of gas or stool from the rectum
- Adverse reaction to anesthesia
- Anal abscess or fistula formation
What to Expect
Prior to Procedure
- Physical exam and health history
- Digital rectal exam—The doctor inserts a lubricated finger into the anus and feels for lumps or abnormalities.
- Anoscopy—A tool is inserted in the anus to allow the doctor to examine the anal canal.
Ask you to take steps to clean out your bowels.
The day before the surgery:
- Eat a light breakfast and lunch.
- Drink clear liquids only after lunch. Clear liquids include items such as water, broth, juices without pulp, popsicles, and clear Jell-O. Talk to your doctor about which liquids are allowed.
- Do not eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery:
- You may also be asked to give yourself an enema to help clean out your bowel.
- The day before the surgery:
- Local anesthesia that will only numb the rectal area
- General anesthesia—You will be asleep during the surgery.
Description of Procedure
How Long Will It Take?
How Much Will It Hurt?
- Washing their hands
- Wearing gloves or masks
- Keeping your incisions covered
- Washing your hands often and reminding your healthcare providers to do the same
- Reminding your healthcare providers to wear gloves or masks
- Not allowing others to touch your incision
- Keeping the rectal area clean
- Using a sitz bath to ease discomfort and cleaning
- Avoiding sexual activity and heavy lifting until your doctor says it is okay
- Over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers
- Stool softeners and dietary changes to prevent constipation
Call Your Doctor
- Large amounts of bleeding from the rectum
- Foul-smelling drainage from the rectum
- Excessive swelling in the rectal area
- Inability to control bowel movements
- Difficulty urinating
American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons http://www.fascrs.org
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians http://familydoctor.org
Canadian Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons http://www.cscrs.ca
The College of Family Physicians of Canada http://www.cfpc.ca
Anal fissure. American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons website. Available at: http://www.fascrs.org/patients/conditions/anal%5Ffissure. Updated October 2012. Accessed May 28, 2013.
Anal fissure. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated November 20, 2012. Accessed May 28, 2013.
Anal fissure treatments. University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, UW Health website. Available at: http://www.uwhealth.org/healthfacts/surgery/5467.html. Updated April 24, 2013. Accessed May 28, 2013.
Anal fissures. Cleveland Clinic website. Available at: http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases%5Fconditions/hic%5FAnal%5FFissures. Updated April 19, 2010. Accessed May 28, 2013.
Anal fissures. University of California San Francisco Medical Center website. Available at: http://www.ucsfhealth.org/education/anal%5Ffissures. Accessed May 28, 2013.
6/6/2011 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Mills E, Eyawo O, et al. Smoking cessation reduces postoperative complications: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Med. 2011;124(2):144-154.
- Reviewer: Daus Mahnke, MD
- Review Date: 01/2015 -
- Update Date: 05/08/2014 -