How do I get treatment

For London Colorectal please telephone:

  • +44 (0) 20 7403 6061

For Gastroenterology please call:

  • +44 (0) 20 7234 2292


Patient advice following a Lateral Sphincterotomy for an Anal fissure.

An anal fissure is a small tear in the skin around the back passage. This can happen without any obvious cause however can often be as a result of constipation or diarrhoea. They are extremely painful, especially in the initial acute attack and can cause bleeding.

First line treatment for anal fissures is usually with the application of a cream; either 2% Diltiazem or GTN which causes the muscles around the back passage to relax and increases blood supply to that area allowing the anal fissure to heal in over half of suffers. It is important that the cream should be applied sparingly as they can cause severe headaches. Wash your hands well following the application of the cream as they can be absorbed. This is successful in over half of suffers. If this fails then surgery will be required.

Lateral Sphincterotomy

This procedure is a very simple operation that involves dividing part of the muscle to try and decrease the spasm. This is a rapid and effective treatment and decreases the pain within a day in the majority of cases. Occasionally some patients report problems of passing wind frequently following this procedure.

  • Continue to take pain relief if required however hopefully you will find that the pain has greatly improved if not completely resolved.
  • It is important not to get constipated therefore you may be advised to take laxatives initially.
  • Ensure you eat a healthy balanced diet including plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. Ensure you drink plenty of fluids.