Table of Contents
What is a Fissure?
A fissure is a cut or tear occurring in the anal canal that is highly uncomfortable and painful, especially during bowel movements. While they are common, it is not a serious condition.
Three stages of a Fissure
- Acute Fissure: It is the first stage of a fissure, during which the tear is still fresh and causes significant pain and discomfort. During this time, you may also experience bleeding, itching and a burning sensation in that area. The anal fissure is the most common fissure type. Such fissures are often the result of constipation and hard stools.
- Chronic Fissure: If the acute fissure has not healed, it could likely lead to a chronic fissure. The chronic fissure will now take more time to heal. Despite getting proper treatment during the second phase, you can expect the fissure to persist for weeks or even months.
- Healing Fissure: During this stage, your fissure will begin to heal. The tears will begin to close. The discomfort and pain will also start to diminish.
Treatment options for a Fissure
Stage 1: Acute fissures
- Indulge in a Sitz bath that involves soaking the affected area in warm water for 10 to 15 mins. Do this at least 2 to 3 times a day.
- Apply ointment on the affected area to relieve pain and push for healing.
- Indulge in a diet that is high in fibre, such as fruits. It will help in softening your stool. It will also help in reducing the strain during bowel movements.
Stage 2: Chronic fissures
- Applying nitroglycerin ointment helps in soothing the sphincter muscle. This helps promote faster healing. However, make sure to check with your doctor to confirm it's safe for you.
- Botulinum toxin injections or botox can help in relaxing the muscle and promoting healing. However, do not forget to consult with your doctor first.
Surgery to heal Fissures
- A lateral internal sphincterotomy helps relax the anal sphincter by making a cut in the anal muscles. It helps in fastening the healing process.
- Laser surgery involves the usage of a diode laser that helps heal it faster. It is one of the easier and faster methods to treat it.
Stages and signs of a Fissure healing
Following are the prominent signs to look for in knowing that your fissure is healing:
- Inflammation stage: This is the first stage of healing. The affected area is red and painful during this stage.
- Proliferation stage: New tissues start growing during this stage. While they might be less painful, they will still itch and burn.
- Maturation stage: The new skin cells mature in this stage. The fissure will begin to shrink. The itching or burning sensation will also go down. Hence, providing you relief.
- Remodelling stage: The skin will feel normal during this stage. The burning sensation should be gone by this stage.
Healing time of an anal fissure
The duration of the healing process depends on several factors. However, you can expect the fissure to heal in approximately 4 to 6 weeks. But in some cases, it might take longer than expected. With the usage of medication, topical treatments or surgery can help fasten the process.
How to heal a fissure fast?
To heal a fissure fast, try to avoid straining the area, use a stool softener, apply a topical cream, soak in a warm bath and further avoid irritants such as spicy food.
Hence, healing a fissure takes time, but you can fasten the process by consulting a doctor. They will be able to assess your condition in a better way and provide the apt remedy.