There are approximately 100,000 cases of anal abscesses per year in the United States. Most abscesses are a result of infection from small anal glands, known as perianal abscesses. Many times, abscesses can form into a fistula, which is a tunnel that forms under the skin and connects the infected glands to the abscess. This process of an abscess forming into a fistula occurs in up to 50 percent of patients with abscesses.

Even though an anal abscess might not turn into an anal fistula, seeing a doctor is critical in order to resolve the problem and prevent a recurrence of abscesses and fistulas. The Fissure & Fistula Center of Excellence can provide help with treatment, both non-surgically and surgically.

Journey of Anal Abscess into a Fistula

An anal abscess is an infected cavity filled with pus found near the anus or rectum. There are also small glands in the anal area that occasionally become clogged and infected. When a tunnel forms that connects the clogged/infected glands to the abscess, a fistula is then formed.

The abscess is most often a result of an acute infection in the internal glands of the anus. Occasionally, bacteria, fecal material or foreign matter can clog the anal gland and create a condition for an abscess cavity to form. If the opening on the skin heals when a fistula is present, a recurrent abscess may develop. The cycle of abscess and fistula formation continues until treatment occurs.

Treatment Steps

Home treatment can help soothe symptoms but will not necessarily cure the abscess. The same applies for antibiotics. While antibiotics are used to manage infection, antibiotics are not an alternative to surgery. Antibiotics do not adequate penetrate the infected cavity filled with pus.

Drainage via a catheter or surgically can be the best way to drain the fluid and debris out of the infected area. If this does not resolve the issue and the area develops into a fistula, then further surgical action may be required including:

Why Seek a Colorectal Surgeon for Treatment?

Colorectal and general surgeons are experts in the surgical and non-surgical treatment of diseases of the colon, rectum and anus. They have completed advanced surgical training in the treatment of these diseases as well as full general surgical training. Board-certified colon and rectal surgeons complete residencies in general surgery and colon and rectal surgery, and pass intensive examinations conducted by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery. More specifically, our surgeons at the Fissure & Fistula Center of Excellence are well versed in the treatment of both abscesses and fistulas.

Contact the Fissure & Fistula Center of Excellence

We have board-certified and highly experienced colorectal surgeons who can give you non-surgical and surgical options for treating your abscess or fistula. We can help restore comfort and minimize recurrence, by you simply visiting our office. Contact our Beverly Hills Office at (888) 512-2312 for abscess and fistula treatment today.