5 Common Rectal Problems

If you're looking to find out about the 5 common rectal problems, then perhaps the information here may be what you are seeking. Considering the purpose behind the rectal and gastrointestinal system itself, it's easy to understand why there may be some problems associated with it. The rectum makes up the last four to five inches of the digestive tract. Most problems associated with this region, ranging from Hemorrhoids to Pruritus Ani, are fairly common and are treatable. 

  1. Hemorrhoids. While there are external and internal hemorrhoids, they're all basically veins that exist within the anal region that can either become stretched or swollen. External hemorrhoids appear as a small bulge on the outside of the anus while internal hemorrhoids arise from within the rectum, possibly protruding out the anus, you may also see little drops of blood in some cases when you go to the bathroom. They're pretty common and non life-threatening, they can be treated with over the counter medications as well as sitting in a tub of warm water a few times a day and avoiding spicy foods and any soaps that may cause irritation.
  2. Fecal Incontinence. This occurs in people who have sustained back trauma or in people with a sphincter that is not fully functioning due to anal surgery or medical illnesses like diabetes and multiple sclerosis. Fecal Incontinence causes accidental release of the stool. There's many treatments for this condition which range from surgery, avoiding gas-inducing foods as well as foods that contain lactose and fructose, Kegel exercises, and medicines that help to decrease stool volume.
  3. Anal Fissure. Another common rectal problem where the lining that surrounds the anal region becomes torn in a sense, usually following a large bowel movement. The symptomatic effects of this would include a burning sensation, sometimes bleeding, or pain, most notably during bowel movement. Treatment ranges from stool softeners, Sitz baths, creams and suppositories, as well as ingesting a high fiber diet. Usually, this rectal problem heals in a timeframe of several weeks.
  4. Pruritus Ani. This common rectal problem consists of itching around the anal region, typically occurring after a bowel movement. This problem usually stems from excessive wiping and cleaning of the anal cavity, however, excessive sweat has also proven to be a cause as well. It's best to avoid certain beverages that contain citrus, caffeine, or alcohol as they may make the itching worse. Avoiding soaps that irritate and gently blotting while cleansing helps to treat the matter as well. 
  5. Anal Abscess. Also known as an Anal Fistula, this rectal problem presents as a pus-filled cavity that occurs as a result of blockage of the anal glands within the anus itself. Symptoms range from pain, swelling, and even fever in some cases. The issue can be treated via surgery where the sphincter muscle is cut, allowing access to the tunnel so that the internal and external fistula openings can be repaired, or via medical treatment. However, medical treatment is typically recommended for patients with Crohn's Disease, from which an Anal Fistula can also occur from.
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