Believe it or not, anal skin tags are more common than you think, and they are nothing to be ashamed of. While some women may choose to live with them, there are options to get rid of the condition to help you feel better and eliminate discomfort.
Read on to learn more about anal skin tag surgery and what to expect with the procedure.
What are anal skin tags?
Anal skin tags are small bumps that appear around the anus, but they aren’t to be confused with warts or hemorrhoids. Some people may have only one or a few while others could have many.
Unlike skin in other areas of the body, skin around the anus has more laxity. That is because it has to stretch to properly pass stool without tearing or other complications. Most of the time, after stretching, the skin returns to its regular size.
The issue arises when you have enlarged blood vessels around the area, which causes you to have excess skin. In some cases, that extra skin forms anal skin tags. Enlarged or swollen blood vessels around the anus may come from:
- Intense exercising
- Straining due to constipation
- Heavy weight lifting
Anal skin tags can also come from improper healing. Whenever you have an injury in the area, the body will heal to the best of its ability. However, healing happens more easily when an area goes untouched. The caveat is that the anus experiences strenuous activity on a regular basis through defecation, which can irritate the wound. So when your body lays down scar tissue, that scar may grow out with extra skin, creating a skin tag. This may stem from:
- Abscesses and infections
- Anal tears (fissures
- Anal gland tunnels (fistulas)
In many cases, anal skin tags are benign, but you should always get diagnosed by a doctor instead of coming to the conclusion on your own. There are times when the bumps could actually be from blood clots or tumors. During a diagnosis, a physician will assess the area through a visual exam to check for skin tags.
What to expect during anal skin tag removal surgery
While the idea of surgery may sound scary, anal skin tag removal isn’t something you should be worried about. Plus, you won’t have to go under general anesthesia or be “knocked out” for long periods of time. Most people are surprised to find how easy this out-patient procedure is, and the result helps them live without discomfort or unsightly bumps.
Before the procedure starts, your doctor will numb the area with a local anesthetic (an oral sedative is also an option). Once the anesthetic and sedative have set in, your doctor will carefully remove your skin tags. Since skin tags are on the outside of your anus, the removal process is fairly simple.*
At Amy Brenner, MD & Associates we use the Ellman Surgitron instead of a scalpel to not only excise the anal skin tags, but to also create a smooth, natural surface. Since the Ellman Surgitron provides superior precision and less thermal injury, it helps promote faster recovery and minimize pain.
What to expect after an anal skin tag removal procedure
Procedure times vary from person to person, usually ranging between 30 to 60 minutes. In the first days after the procedure, your doctor may recommend you take a laxative or try a liquid diet to make using the restroom easier and reduce the possibility of constipation. You’ll also receive prescription medications to manage pain and prevent infections.
For the following week, you’ll want to avoid heavy lifting and exercise, but you should be able to return to your regular activities after two weeks.
*In some cases, your doctor may involve a colorectal surgeon depending on the severity of your anal skin tags.
Anal skin tag surgery frequently asked questions
We definitely understand that considering surgery is a big deal. That is why our team is always available to answer your questions. Our goal is that everyone who steps into our Cincinnati office is comfortable with their decision and well-informed about the process. When you feel better; we feel better, and that is what helps keep our patients at ease.
How do I know if I’m a candidate for anal skin tag surgery?
The only way for you to know whether or not you are a candidate for skin tag surgery is by visiting a doctor. If you’re in the Cincinnati area, you can schedule a consultation with us, and will examine your tags to ensure there are no active hemorrhoids and that surgery is the right solution for you. We also offer virtual consultations for anyone who is out of town.
Are anal skin tags the same as hemorrhoids?
No, anal skin tags are not the same as hemorrhoids, though many people mistake the two. Anal skin tags may arise from a previous hemorrhoid, but the hemorrhoid is no longer there. Tags are simply excess skin.
Can anal tags be inside the anus?
Anal skin tags are not inside the anus. They are always outside and around the anus. If you have bumps inside your anus, it may be something else, and you wouldn’t be able to go through the same skin tag removal procedure.
Will I experience pain after the surgery?
You may experience some pain and discomfort after surgery and throughout recovery. However, your doctor will provide medications to control pain and prevent infections.
Can I combine anal skin tag surgery with other procedures?
Of course you can combine anal skin tag surgery with other procedures! In fact, we do it quite often. Many of our patients add anal skin tag removal onto other cosmetic surgeries they are planning for, such as:
Your labia minora are the smaller, inner vaginal lips. Usually they’re unnoticeable in day-to-day life, but excess tissue can cause irritation, rubbing, or even pain. A labiaplasty minora procedure not only alleviates those symptoms, it can also improve the aesthetic appearance of your vulva.
A labiaplasty majora procedure reshapes the larger, outer lips of your vagina. Overtime, the outer lips can become elongated, saggy, bulge, or appear asymmetrical, which can even be noticeable under clothing.
Both labiaplasty procedures remove excess tissue to reduce, reshape, and rejuvenate your labia.
Clitoral hood reduction: A clitoral hood reduction, also known as hoodectomy or clitoropexy, reduces the amount of skin surrounding the clitoris. Since the sole purpose of the clitoris is pleasure, excess tissue on the clitoral hood can decrease sexual stimulation. For some women, a large clitoris may cause embarrassment, especially if it’s noticeable under tight clothing.
Vaginoplasty: A vaginoplasty procedure tightens the inner and outer muscles and the structure of your vagina. As a result, it can strengthen your vagina and increase muscle tone and control. Most women find that the procedure increases sexual pleasure by making the vaginal canal smaller and tighter.
Perineoplasty: A perineoplasty procedure addresses any issues with the vaginal opening (introitus), including a vaginal opening that’s too tight or too loose. This surgery repairs the tissue and tightens the muscles of the vaginal opening to make the perineum (area between the opening of the vagina and the anus) more aesthetically pleasing.
You can also choose to get a modified perineoplasty (the combination of a perineoplasty procedure and labiaplasty procedure). Keep in mind that a modified perineoplasty will only address excess skin in the perineum; it won’t tighten the muscle or address a more substantial vaginal issue.
O-Shot®: The O-Shot®, also known as the Orgasm Shot, is the perfect way for women to take control of their sexual wellness. Using platelet-rich plasma, this minimally invasive procedure helps to rejuvenate the clitoris and vaginal walls.
The injections themselves are very quick; expect them to be done within a few minutes. A medical professional will first inject your platelet-rich plasma into the anterior wall of your vagina, then directly into the clitoris.
How can I prevent future anal skin tags?
There isn’t one surefire way to prevent anal tags. In some cases, they form no matter what you do. However, there are some ways you could reduce their occurrence, including:
- Solving digestive problems and maintaining a healthy diet to avoid constipation
- Getting enough fiber in your diet and take supplements if needed
- Avoiding tight-fitting and non-breathable underwear and clothing items to reduce irritation
- When cleaning, use moist towelettes (unscented) or softer toilet paper
Schedule an anal tag surgery consultation with Amy Brenner, MD & Associates
Our health experts and cosmetic gynecologists provide the best anal tag removal surgery for women of all ages. Plus, with our vast array of sexual wellness procedures, we can not only alleviate discomfort, but also boost confidence by helping you reach your goals.
We’re here to offer a warm, friendly environment while providing the highest quality surgical procedures and aesthetic treatments to help you look great and feel great. No matter what, we will stick with you throughout your entire journey, because your goals are our goals.
Get started today by using our virtual consultation tool or scheduling an appointment.