The Common Causes of Rectal Lumps | Minneapolis & St Paul

A rectal lump is one of the common symptoms in the anorectal diseases in Minnesota. A rectal lump is a growth in the anal canal or rectal area. Rectal lumps vary in size and the degree to which they produce symptoms. Depending on the underlying cause, a rectal lump may or may not cause any pain.

Should you be worried about that bump you just discovered back there? A palpable mass in the anal area may or may not indicate cancer or hemorrhoids. Lumps can be caused by a variety of conditions including anal warts, hemorrhoids, polyps, fissures, or cancer.

  • Hemorrhoids are probably the most common reason for having a rectal lump in Minnesota. It can be caused by internal hemorrhoids, but more commonly by external hemorrhoids. If a rectal lump is related to internal hemorrhoids, it usually gets bigger and more prolapsed right after the bowel movement; it could be spontaneously reduced in the early stage of internal hemorrhoids. But it could be non-reducible in the late stage of hemorrhoids. It may be associated with other symptoms such as bleeding, itch or pain. The thrombosed external hemorrhoids are usually very painful if the varicose veins rupture and the blood clots develop.
  • Anal warts are caused by human papilloma virus (HPV). HPV infection is considered to be sexually transmitted diseases. Left untreated, anal warts can spread and increase the risk of cancer in the rectal and anal region.
  • Anal Fissure is a small cut or split in the anal lining often caused by a painful, hard bowel movement. Fissures are typically located anterior or posterior to the anus. Anal fissure is often associated with a lump called sentinel pile, accompanied by pain and bleeding.
  • Rectal Cancer. The rectum is the last six inches of the body’s digestive system, exiting through the anus. One cause of a rectal lump is rectal cancer. Symptoms that require doctor’s attention include blood in the stool, change in bowel habits, tired feeling, abdominal discomfort, change in appetite, or unexplained weight loss.
  • Anal cancer occurs in the anal canal, it is account for 2% of cancer in the gastrointestinal tract. An external or internal mass may be palpable. Anal or rectal cancer generally do not produce any pain; Some lesions are so soft that they are missed on palpation. Anal cancer can take several forms including ulcers, polyps or verrucous growths.
  • Anorectal abscesses are the result of infection of anal glands in the lining of the anal canal near the opening of the anus. The patient usually has the painful swollen lump if it is superficial abscess. The presence of an abscess warrants surgical incision and drainage as soon as possible. Just antibiotics would be ineffective at this stage in the infection.

If you feel a lump in the anal or rectal area, contact our hemorrhoid clinics in Edina to determine the cause and get treatment. You should seek immediate medical care if the associated symptoms are serious such as high fever, drainage of pus from a rectal lump, severe pain, or bloody stool.

Rectal Pain: What are the Common Causes? | Minnesota

Rectal pain is one of common symptoms in the minnesotan patients with anorectal diseases. It can be caused by various anorectal conditions.

Acute anal fissure usually causes sharp pain during intense, forced bowel movements, and it is often accompanied by rectal bleeding with bright red blood. The patients with chronic anal fissures usually have intermittent sharp rectal pain due to sphincter muscle spasm and bleeding with each bowel movement for a long time.

Pain that begins gradually and becomes excruciating may indicate infection that leads to anorectal abscess, and pain improves if the absecess ruptures, and pressure inside abscess reduces.

In general, external hemorrhoids often cause itching and discomfort due to the difficulty in cleasing after bowel movement, but it usually don’t cause significant rectal pain. They will cause pain, however, if the varicose vein complex ruptures, as blood clots occur and build up the pressure inside the lump. This condition, known as thrombosed external hemorrhoid, causes an extremely painful bluish anal lump. The somatic nerve in the anal canal (below the dentate line) can sense pain, this is why the patients feel significant pain with the immediate onset when they develop thrombosed external hemorrhoids.

Internal hemorrhoids, however, are not painful due to being located above the dentate line of the rectum that is supplied by the visceral nerve, like those found within the intestines, which sense pressure rather than pain. Similarly, rectal cancer typically does not cause pain unless the condition is advanced.

Proctalgia fugax (rectal pain) is an anorectal pain syndrome that occurs in episodes lasting seconds or minutes, typically in the middle of the night, though it is very possible to experience it during the day as well. Patients may feel spasm-like, sharp pain in the anus that is often mistaken for a sign that they must defecate. Levator ani syndrome presents the symptoms with vague, aching or pressure feeling high in the rectum. It could be worsened by sitting and relieved by walking. The pain tends to be constant and lasts from hours to days. It recurs regularly. Both conditions are recurrent, and while not curable, treatments are available.

The Common Causes of Anal Itching | Minneapolis & St Paul

Anal itching, also called anal pruritus is a common symptom in the office visit in Minnesota. The symptom often fluctuates over time. The initial relief of the itching does not necessarily mean the problem goes away. Continuous scratching or excessive cleaning of the anal area may further harm the sensitive tissues and worsen symptoms. In addition, the area can be highly sensitive to perfumes, soaps, fabrics, dietary intake and superficial trauma. When chronic itching occurs, the perianal area becomes white and thick with fine fissures.

Possible causes of anal itching include:

Hemorrhoids: Anal itching can be an initial symptom of hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids usually cause local inflammation. The skin folds, anal tags and external hemorrhoids make cleansing difficult.

Skin irritation: The local inflammation caused by hemorrhoids and anal leakage cause moisture around anus, and moisture and friction can irritate the skin in the peri-anal area. Some products such as soap and toilet paper may also trigger irritation.

Digestive problems: Diarrhea or fecal leakage can cause anal irritation and itching.

Skin disease: Anal itching could be related to a specific skin disease, such as psoriasis or contact dermatitis.

Infections: STD, yeast infections, and the parasite may also involve the anus and can cause anal itching.

Anal tumors: Rarely, a cause of anal itching.

Treatments for anal itching include:
1. Keep the peri-anal area dry and clean
2. Avoid scratching skin
3. Taking antihistamine as a sedative prior to sleeping to prevent the patient from unconsciously scratching
4. Using a topical cream such as Preparation H cream or corticosteroid cream to alleviate the itching.
5. Treat the underlying disorders such as hemorrhoids after thorough evaluation.

The Management of Anal Tags | Minneapolis & St Paul

Have you been using too much toilet paper because of pesky anal tags? Hemorrhoidal skin tags are flaps of skin or flesh found around the anus. They often form as a result of an existing hemorrhoid.

Anal tags are the shapeless lumps and flaps of skin and tissue found at the anal verge. They’re quite common and usually come with other anorectal problems, such as hemorrhoids.

Anal skin tags often occur if an individual heals the thrombosed external hemorrhoids at home without surgery, the thrombosed hemorrhoids may leave behind skin tags. Anal sentinel tags may also form because of non-hemorrhoid causes, such as anal fissure, surgery, or infection, etc.

Despite the fact that people often confuse them with cancerous growths, skin tags are benign and present no serious health concerns.

Hemorrhoidal skin tags often don’t cause significant rectal symptoms, but they often affect the cleansing after bowel movement. If feces become trapped beneath the skin tags, it can cause irritation and lead to itching and further inflammation. Skin tags can also cause pain when it flairs up or if there’s another underlying rectal problem.

Patients suffering discomfort or itching due to hemorrhoidal skin tags can treat the condition with the following:

  • Thorough cleaning of the affected area after bowel movement. May use gentle cleansers, such as witch hazel or aloe vera extract.
  • Do a Sitz bath with warm water.
  • May use OTC hemorrhoid cream to reduce irritation and swelling.
  • If the skin tags frequently cause symptoms, individuals may consider having them removed surgically.
  • Most patients who have anal tags often have hemorrhoids, too, they should consider complete care by treating internal hemorrhoids before removal of anal tags or at the same time.

Excision of anal tags:
Anal tags can easily be removed in the office using local anesthetic. A radiofrequency device is used to get rid of skin tabs and resurface the anal area to acquire a good cosmetic result. The procedure takes less than 10 minutes and patients are safe to drive immediately afterwards. There may be mild postoperative pain and discomfort with bowel movement in the first week. The patients are typically able to go back to work next day although the whole healing process may take a few weeks. If the patient needs a hemorrhoidectomy, anal tags can be removed together as part of hemorrhoidectomy. If the anal tag is extensive, two stages of surgery may be necessary to avoid anal stenosis.

Common Symptoms of Hemorrhoids | Minneapolis & St Paul

Severe pain is not a common symptom of internal hemorrhoids, because internal hemorrhoid happens in the area above the dentate line that is supplied by the visceral nerve, like those found within the intestines, which sense pressure rather than pain. Many patients feel the irritating pain and pressure pain when their hemorrhoids flair up. Small percentage of hemorrhoid patients may develop spasmodic pain (proctalgia fugax) caused by spasms of anal sphincter muscles.

As the venous complex of an internal hemorrhoid becomes varicose and continues to enlarge, it bulges into the anal canal and loses its normal anchoring, becoming a prolapsing internal hemorrhoid. The prolapsing hemorrhoid usually returns into the anal canal or rectum on its own, or can be pushed back inside using one’s finger, but usually prolapses again after the next bowel movement. In the anal canal, a hemorrhoid is exposed to movement caused by passing stool, particularly hard stools that can cause bleeding and pain. The painless rectal bleeding with bright red blood is a common symptom of internal hemorrhoids. The rectal mucosal lining that has been pulled down secretes mucus and moistens the anus and its surrounding skin, while the stool itself can also leak onto the anal skin. Itchiness often occurs as a result of this dual presence of stool and moisture.

In general, symptoms of external hemorrhoids are different than those of internal hemorrhoids. External hemorrhoids can be felt as bulges at the anus, but rarely display any of the same symptoms seen with internal hemorrhoids. The patients with external hemorrhoids or anal tags often have the difficulty in cleansing after bowel movements because feces left in the folds of external hemorrhoids or tags causes irritation and itching. Some patients may develop severe and cyclic rectal itching (Pruritic Ani).

If the varicose vein complex ruptures, as blood clots occur and build up the pressure inside the lump. This condition, known as thrombosed external hemorrhoid, causes an extremely painful bluish anal lump and often requires medical attention. The somatic nerve in the anal canal (below the dentate line) can sense pain, this is why the patients feel significant pain when they develop thrombosed external hemorrhoids. Thrombosed hemorrhoids may heal with scarring and leave a tag of skin protruding from the anus. Occasionally, the tag turns out to be quite large, which can make anal hygiene (cleaning) difficult or irritate the anus.

Treatment of External Thrombosed hemorrhoids | Minneapolis & St Paul

External hemorrhoids occur outside the anal verge. Thrombosed external hemorrhoids occur if varicose veins rupture and blood clots develop. It is often accompanied by swelling with a bluish-purplish discoloration and severe incapacitating pain.

The symptoms may improve in some patients with conservative nonsurgical treatment – the anal care I coined includes stool softeners, increased dietary fiber, increased fluid intake, warm Sitz baths, and analgesia. For most patients, surgical excision is often more effective and efficient in treating thrombosed external hemorrhoids. Surgical excision is an office-based procedure performed under local anesthesia. This safe office procedure offers low complication and recurrence rates and high levels of patient satisfaction.

Procedure
After cleaning the anal area with an antiseptic, lidocaine with epinephrine is locally injected in the surgical area. The thrombosed hemorrhoid is unroofed by making an elliptical incision in the hemorrhoid, then the blood clots are removed, and the procedure is finished for a simple case. Simply draining the clot usually relieves the pain immediately, but it may not work well if multiple thromboses exist as it can also lead to recurrence, so it is better for patients with multiple thromboses to completely excise the thrombosed hemorrhoids. The external hemorrhoidectomy may be performed, then the hemorrhoidal tissue with blood clots is removed together, and the bleeding in the wound is stopped with a cautery. The wound in the anal area is covered with sterile gauze.

Postoperative Care
The patient will be instructed to do anal care measures, including warm Sitz baths three times a day for 15-30 minutes at a time. Acetaminophen or ibuprofen should be used for pain control. The patient should remain well hydrated and take a stool softener to keep stool soft.

Complications
Common complications of thrombosed external hemorrhoid excision include pain, bleeding, infection and delayed healing. A perianal skin tag could develop in some patients. Stricture and incontinence are extremely rare complications.

Why can’t Single Treatment Modality Fix All Hemorrhoids? | Minnesota

Hemorrhoids diseases include internal hemorrhoids, external hemorrhoids, anal tags, thrombosis of hemorrhoids and mixed hemorrhoids. Internal hemorrhoids are graded from I to IV based on the degree of prolapse. Besides causing anal itching, pain, bleeding and prolapse, hemorrhoids could cause other complications, such as thrombosis, anemia, and infection. Moreover, many hemorrhoid patients have a comorbidity of anal fissure, fistula, or anal warts. Because no single treatment modality can fix all hemorrhoids, a true hemorrhoid clinic will offer multiple treatment modalities and options to meet a patient’s needs and provide complete care.

If you are treated with single modality for your hemorrhoids, regardless of the severity, type of hemorrhoids, and associated anorectal conditions, it leads to poor results because of poor quality care.

No single treatment modality can fix all hemorrhoids or get rid of anorectal symptoms. Specialized hemorrhoid clinics should be able to offer multiple treatment modalities with cutting edge technologies to cure hemorrhoids and associated diseases.

Internal hemorrhoid Grade 1
Very early hemorrhoids can often be effectively dealt with by dietary and lifestyle changes. The lifestyle changes should also be part of the treatment plan for more advanced hemorrhoids.

Internal hemorrhoid Grade 1-2
Infrared coagulation (IRC) is a non-surgical treatment that is fast, well tolerated, and remarkably complication-free. The infrared light quickly coagulates the vessels that provide the hemorrhoid with blood, causing the hemorrhoids to shrink and recede.

Internal hemorrhoid Grade 3
Rubber band ligation is widely used for the treatment of more advanced (more prolapsed) internal hemorrhoids where the prolapsed hemorrhoidal tissue is pulled into a double-sleeved cylinder to allow the placement of rubber bands around the tissue. Over time, the ligated tissue dies off. Rubber band ligation downgrades the hemorrhoids to grade 1 or 2, so some patients may need to do Infra-Red Coagulation (IRC) treatments after Rubber band ligation.

Internal hemorrhoid Grade 4
A hemorrhoidectomy surgically removes the tissue that causes bleeding or protrusion. It is done in a doctor’s office, surgical center, or hospital under anesthesia and may require a period of inactivity.

External hemorrhoidal tags (anal tags)
Small and asymptomatic tags don’t need any treatment. If symptomatic, anal tags can easily be removed in the office using a local anesthetic and a radiofrequency device.

Thrombosed external hemorrhoids
These hemorrhoids are typically treated with either incision to remove the clot or with external hemorrhoidectomy. Simply draining the clot usually relieves the pain immediately, but it may not work well if multiple thromboses exist as it can also lead to recurrence, so it is better for patients with multiple thromboses to completely excise the thrombosed hemorrhoids.

External hemorrhoids
Small and asymptomatic external hemorrhoids don’t need any treatment, however most patients will have an intermittent flare up. Eventually patients may need surgery (external hemorrhoidectomy) if you have large external hemorrhoids and/or persistent symptomatic external hemorrhoids.

Rubber band ligation for the Treatments of Internal Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

Rubber band ligation is one of the most common outpatient treatments available for the Minnesotan patients with internal hemorrhoids. It is a better option for patients with prolapsed hemorrhoids. A number of prospective studies have found rubber band ligation to be a simple, safe, and effective method for treating symptomatic second- and third-degree internal hemorrhoids as an office procedure with significant improvement in quality of life. This procedure is almost never appropriate if there is insufficient tissue to be pulled inside the band ligator drum, such as grade 1 or mild grade 2 hemorrhoids, and it should not be done with the most severe (grade 4) hemorrhoids, either.

Rubber band ligation is an office procedure in which the prolapsed hemorrhoid tissue is tied off at its base with rubber bands, cutting off the blood flow to the hemorrhoidal mass. It is contraindicated in the patients using anticoagulants and other anorectal diseases, such as local infection, acute thrombosis and chronic anal fissure.

The process involves a doctor inserting an anoscope into the anus and identifying and grasping the prolapsed hemorrhoid with an instrument to place a rubber band around its base. With the rubber band in place, the hemorrhoid shrinks and recedes, dying off in a few days or a week. The reduced volume of venous tissue with the scar formation prevents hemorrhoid tissue from bulging into the anal canal. The procedure is usually done in a doctor’s office and only takes a couple of minutes. Treatment is limited to one to two hemorrhoids each office visit, and additional areas may be treated at two week intervals.

What to expect after the rubber band ligation treatment:

After the banding procedure, most patients don’t feel much discomfort; some may feel tightness and mild pain or feel as if you need to have bowel movement. People respond differently to this procedure. Most patients are able to return to regular activities (but avoid heavy lifting) almost immediately. Others may need a few hours or a day of rest. If you feel some pain after banding, you may use Tylenol or Ibuprofen as needed and take a lot of Sitz baths for 15-30 minutes at a time to relieve discomfort.

Some patients may have slight rectal bleeding after a week, when the rubber band falls off. The bleeding usually stops by itself; however, if you notice significant rectal bleeding, then you should call your doctor’s office. It is also very important to make sure that your stool is soft by taking stool softeners containing fiber and drink more fluids.

Manangement of Anal Skin Tags | Minnesota

Have you been using too much toilet paper because of pesky anal tags? Hemorrhoidal skin tags are flaps of skin or flesh found around the anus. They often form as a result of an existing hemorrhoid. Hemorrhoids occur when veins in the anorectal areas become swollen and inflamed.

Anal skin tags often occur if an individual heals the thrombosed external hemorrhoids at home without surgery, the thrombosed hemorrhoids may leave behind skin tags. Anal skin tags may also form because of non-hemorrhoid causes, such as anal fissure, surgery, or infection, etc. Despite the fact that people often confuse them with cancerous growths, skin tags are benign and present no serious health concerns.

Hemorrhoidal skin tags often don’t cause significant rectal symptoms, but they often affect the cleansing after bowel movement. If feces become trapped beneath the skin tags, it can cause irritation and lead to itching and further inflammation. Skin tags can also cause pain when it flairs up or if there’s another underlying rectal problem.

Patients suffering discomfort or itching due to hemorrhoidal skin tags can treat the condition with the following:

  • Thorough cleaning of the affected area after bowel movement. May use gentle cleansers, such as witch hazel or aloe vera extract.
  • Do a Sitz bath with warm water.
  • May use OTC hemorrhoid cream to reduce irritation and swelling.
  • If the skin tags frequently cause symptoms, individuals may consider having them removed surgically.
  • Most patients who have anal tags often have hemorrhoids, too, they should consider complete care by treating internal hemorrhoids before removal of anal tags or at the same time.

Excision of anal tags:
Anal tags can easily be removed in the office using local anesthetic. The procedure takes less than 10 minutes and patients are safe to drive immediately afterwards. There may be mild postoperative pain and discomfort with bowel movement in the first week. The patients are typically able to go back to work next day although the whole healing process may take a few weeks.

Why Single Treatment Modality can’t Fix All Hemorrhoids

There are three types of hemorrhoids – internal, external, and mixed hemorrhoids that consist of both internal and external. Internal hemorrhoids are graded from I to IV based on the degree of prolapse. Because no single treatment modality can fix all hemorrhoids, a true hemorrhoid clinic will offer multiple treatment modalities and options to meet a patient’s needs.

Years ago, an IRC-only hemorrhoid clinic at France Avenue closed its business because a family physician treated every hemorrhoid patient with the single modality – Infra-red coagulation (IRC), regardless of the severity, type of hemorrhoids, and associated anorectal conditions. Poor quality care leads to poor results.

Many patients with more advanced hemorrhoids need banding, and even the surgical excision of anal tags and external hemorrhoids. Many hemorrhoid patients have a comorbidity of anal fissure, fistula or anal warts, and need further management with special expertise for these associated medical problems.

Most hemorrhoid patients have the symptom of rectal bleeding; a high quality hemorrhoid clinic should offer colonoscopy to rule out colon cancer and other colon diseases.

No single treatment modality can fix all hemorrhoids or get rid of anorectal symptoms. Specialized hemorrhoid clinic should be able to offer multiple treatment modalities with cutting edge technologies to cure hemorrhoids and associated diseases.

One Stop Medical center provides premier one stop hemorrhoid care. Regardless of how severe your hemorrhoids are, what kind hemorrhoids, or any associated anorectal diseases, we are able to find a solution for you. Supported by an outstanding medical team and equipped with cutting edge technology, our state-of-the-art accredited surgical center sets the standard for patient safety and high quality medical care.

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