BACK TOTOP Browse A-ZSearchBrowse A-ZABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ0-9 E-mail FormEmail ResultsName:Email address:Recipients Name:Recipients address:Message: Print-FriendlyBookmarksbookmarks-menuAnorectal abscessAnal abscess; Rectal abscess; Perirectal abscess; Perianal abscess; Gland abscess; Abscess - anorectalAn anorectal abscess is a collection of pus in the area of the anus and rectum. Causes Common causes of anorectal abscess include:Blocked glands in the anal area Infection of an anal fissure Anal fissureAn anal fissure is a small split or tear in the thin moist tissue (mucosa) lining the lower rectum (anus).ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Sexually transmitted infection (STD) TraumaDeep rectal abscesses may be caused by intestinal disorders such as Crohn disease or diverticulitis.Crohn diseaseCrohn disease is a disease where parts of the digestive tract become inflamed. It most often involves the lower end of the small intestine and the be...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article DiverticulitisDiverticula are small, bulging sacs or pouches that form on the inner wall of the intestine. Diverticulitis occurs when these pouches become inflame...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article The following factors increase the risk for an anorectal abscess: Anal sex Chemotherapy medicines used to treat cancer ChemotherapyThe term chemotherapy is used to describe cancer-killing drugs. Chemotherapy may be used to:Cure the cancer Shrink the cancerPrevent the cancer from...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Diabetes DiabetesDiabetes is a long-term (chronic) disease in which the body cannot regulate the amount of sugar in the blood.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn disease and ulcerative colitis) Ulcerative colitisUlcerative colitis is a condition in which the lining of the large intestine (colon) and rectum become inflamed. It is a form of inflammatory bowel ...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Use of corticosteroid medicines Weakened immune system (such as from HIV/AIDS) HIV/AIDSHuman immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is the virus that causes AIDS. When a person becomes infected with HIV, the virus attacks and weakens the immune ...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article The condition affects men more than women. The condition may occur in infants and toddlers who are still in diapers and who have a history of anal fissures. Symptoms Common symptoms are swelling around the anus and a constant, throbbing pain with swelling. Pain may be severe with bowel movements, coughing and sitting.Other symptoms may include:Constipation ConstipationConstipation in infants and children occurs when they have hard stools or have problems passing stools. A child may have pain while passing stools o...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Discharge of pus from the rectum Fatigue, fever, night sweats, and chills FeverFever is the temporary increase in the body's temperature in response to a disease or illness. A child has a fever when the temperature is at or abov...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Redness, painful and hardened tissue in the area of the anus TendernessIn infants, the abscess often appears as a swollen, red, tender lump at the edge of the anus. The infant may be fussy and irritable from discomfort. There are usually no other symptoms. Exams and Tests A rectal examination may confirm an anorectal abscess. A proctosigmoidoscopy may be done to rule out other diseases.Rectal examinationA digital rectal exam is an exam of the lower rectum. The health care provider uses a gloved, lubricated finger to check for any abnormal findings....ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article ProctosigmoidoscopySigmoidoscopy is a procedure used to see inside the sigmoid colon and rectum. The sigmoid colon is the area of the large intestine nearest to the re...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article In some cases, a CT scan, MRI, or ultrasound is needed to help locate the collection of pus.CT scanA computed tomography (CT) scan is an imaging method that uses x-rays to create pictures of cross-sections of the body. Related tests include:Abdomin...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article MRIA magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan is an imaging test that uses powerful magnets and radio waves to create pictures of the body. It does not us...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article UltrasoundUltrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to make images of organs and structures inside the body.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Treatment The problem rarely goes away on its own. Antibiotics alone usually cannot treat an abscess.Treatment involves surgery to open and drain the abscess.Surgery is usually done with local numbing medicine, along with medicine to make you sleepy. Sometimes, spinal or general anesthesia is used. Medicine to make you sleepyConscious sedation is a combination of medicines to help you relax (a sedative) and to block pain (an anesthetic) during a medical or dental procedur...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Spinal or general anesthesiaSpinal and epidural anesthesia are procedures that deliver medicines that numb parts of your body to block pain. They are given through shots in or ...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Surgery is most often an outpatient procedure, which means that you go home on the same day. The surgeon cuts open the abscess and drains the pus. Sometimes a drain is put in to keep the incision open and draining, and sometimes the abscess cavity is packed with gauze. If the pus collection is deep, you may need to stay in the hospital longer for pain control and nursing care of the abscess drainage site. After surgery, you may need warm sitz baths (sitting in a tub of warm water). This helps relieve pain and reduce swelling.Drained abscesses are usually left open and no stitches are needed.The surgeon may prescribe painkillers and antibiotics.Avoiding constipation will help decrease pain. You may need stool softeners. Drinking fluids and eating foods with lots of fiber can also help. Outlook (Prognosis) With prompt treatment, people with this condition usually do well. Infants and toddlers usually recover quickly.Complications can occur when treatment is delayed. Possible Complications Complications of anorectal abscess may include:Anal fistula (abnormal connection between the anus and another structure) FistulaA fistula is an abnormal connection between two body parts, such as an organ or blood vessel and another structure. Fistulas are usually the result ...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Infection that spreads to the blood (sepsis) SepsisSepsis is an illness in which the body has a severe, inflammatory response to bacteria or other germs.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Continuing pain Problem keeps coming back (recurrence) When to Contact a Medical Professional Call your health care provider if you:Notice rectal discharge, pain, or other symptoms of anorectal abscess Have fever, chills, or other new symptoms after being treated for this condition Are a diabetic and your blood glucose becomes difficult to control Prevention Prevention or prompt treatment of STDs may prevent an anorectal abscess from forming. Use condoms during intercourse, including anal sex, to prevent such infections.In infants and toddlers, frequent diaper changes and proper cleaning during diaper changes can help prevent both anal fissures and abscesses.Open ReferencesReferencesCoates WC. Anorectal procedures. In: Roberts JR, Custalow CB, Thomsen TW, eds. Roberts and Hedges' Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine and Acute Care. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 45.Merchea A, Larson DW. Anus. In: Townsend CM Jr, Beauchamp RD, Evers BM, Mattox KL, eds. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery. 20th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2017:chap 52.AllVideoImagesTogRectum - illustration The rectum is the final portion of the large intestine. It empties stool from the body through the anus. RectumillustrationRectum - illustration The rectum is the final portion of the large intestine. It empties stool from the body through the anus. Rectumillustration Tests for Anorectal abscess Indium-labelled WBC scanRelated Information Anal fissure(Condition)Abscess(Condition)Crohn disease(Condition)Diverticulitis(Condition)Systemic(Special Topic)Crohn disease(In-Depth) Review Date: 5/17/2020 Reviewed By: Debra G. Wechter, MD, FACS, general surgery practice specializing in breast cancer, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- © 1997- All rights reserved. A.D.A.M. content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Firefox and Google Chrome browser.Content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Firefox and Google Chrome browser.