9 doctors weighed in:

What is the distinction between anal fissure/fistula and hemorrhoid?

9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mark Pack
Surgery
2 doctors agree

In brief: All different

An anal fissure is a small tear in the mucosa that lines the anus.
An anal fistula is tract between the anal canal and the skin. A hemorrhoid is a 'varicose (dilated) vein" of the anal canal.

In brief: All different

An anal fissure is a small tear in the mucosa that lines the anus.
An anal fistula is tract between the anal canal and the skin. A hemorrhoid is a 'varicose (dilated) vein" of the anal canal.
Dr. Mark Pack
Dr. Mark Pack
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Dr. Scott Browning
Surgery - Colorectal
2 doctors agree

In brief: Different problems

An anal fissure is a tear in the lining of the anal canal causing pain and bleeding.
An anal fistula is a tunnel from inside the anal canal out to the perianal skin. It may cause drainage, pain and swelling. There are internal hemorrhoids which may prolapse and cause bleeding, discomfort and itching, and external hemorrhoids which may cause pain or difficulty with cleaning.

In brief: Different problems

An anal fissure is a tear in the lining of the anal canal causing pain and bleeding.
An anal fistula is a tunnel from inside the anal canal out to the perianal skin. It may cause drainage, pain and swelling. There are internal hemorrhoids which may prolapse and cause bleeding, discomfort and itching, and external hemorrhoids which may cause pain or difficulty with cleaning.
Dr. Scott Browning
Dr. Scott Browning
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Dr. Allen Kamrava
Surgery - Colorectal

In brief: All Different

Fissure: think paper cut in your anus hemorrhoids: think varicose veins in the anus fistula: much more complex - think aberrant tract from rectum to skin that shouldn't be there.

In brief: All Different

Fissure: think paper cut in your anus hemorrhoids: think varicose veins in the anus fistula: much more complex - think aberrant tract from rectum to skin that shouldn't be there.
Dr. Allen Kamrava
Dr. Allen Kamrava
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Dr. Carolyn Messere
Surgery - Colorectal
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Pain

Hemorrhoids are usually only painful if they are thrombosed.
A thrombosed hemorrhoid usually presents with a large, tender bump on the anal area. Fissure usually presents with severe pain with bowel movements and bright red blood. People often describe a sensation like razor blades or knives when they pass stool. Fistula is associated with drainage, and not usually painful unless there is abscess.

In brief: Pain

Hemorrhoids are usually only painful if they are thrombosed.
A thrombosed hemorrhoid usually presents with a large, tender bump on the anal area. Fissure usually presents with severe pain with bowel movements and bright red blood. People often describe a sensation like razor blades or knives when they pass stool. Fistula is associated with drainage, and not usually painful unless there is abscess.
Dr. Carolyn Messere
Dr. Carolyn Messere
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