anal fissure is a narrow tear that extends from the
muscles that control the anus (sphincters) up into the anal canal. These tears
usually develop when anal tissue is damaged during a hard bowel movement or
when higher-than-normal tension develops in the anal sphincters.
An anal fistula is a tubelike passage (tract) from
the anal canal to a hole in the skin near the anus. This may occur after rectal
surgery, after an abscess in the rectal area, or as a complication of a bowel
ByHealthwise Staff Primary Medical ReviewerAnne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine Specialist Medical ReviewerC. Dale Mercer, MD, FRCSC, FACS - General Surgery
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