An anal skin tag is a relatively common skin condition that can occur around the anus and rectal area. Some people may experience discomfort, irritation, or even embarrassment as a result of these small, fleshy growths.
In this article, we’ll look at what anal skin tags are, how to identify them, and some expert tips for removing and treating them.
Identification of Anal Skin Tags
Anal skin tags must be properly identified in order for them to be correctly diagnosed and distinguished from other similar-looking conditions. Here are some more details to aid in the identification process:
Anal skin tags typically have a soft, fleshy appearance, resembling small flaps of skin. They can range in diameter from a few millimeters to a few centimeters. Anal skin tags are typically the same color as the surrounding skin, though they may appear slightly darker at times. Because of their appearance, they may be mistaken for warts in some cases, but anal skin tags lack the rough texture commonly associated with warts.
These growths are frequently found in the perianal region, which surrounds the anus. They can appear singly or in clusters, and the number of skin tags in the same area can range from one to several.
Soft and Painless to Touch:
One of the key characteristics of anal skin tags is their texture. They feel soft and painless when touched unless they are irritated by friction or other factors. Anal skin tags, in contrast to hemorrhoids, are not tender or sensitive to touch.
Pedunculated or Non-Pedunculated:
Based on their appearance, anal skin tags can be divided into two types:
Pedunculated skin tags have a narrow stalk or peduncle that connects them to the surrounding skin. The stalk gives them the appearance of hanging or dangling.
Non-Pedunculated Skin Tags: Non-pedunculated skin tags, on the other hand, lack a visible stalk and lie flat against the skin.
The development of anal skin tags is often associated with repetitive friction and irritation in the anal area. Long periods of sitting, excessive wiping after bowel movements, and obesity can all contribute to the formation of these skin tags. As a result, they are more frequently seen in adults.
Distinction from Other Conditions:
To avoid misidentification, anal skin tags must be distinguished from other conditions that can appear in the same area. Human papillomavirus (HPV) anal warts resemble skin tags, but they have a rough texture and may be clustered closely together. As previously stated, pilonidal cysts differ from anal skin tags in that they occur at the base of the tailbone and require separate treatment.
Anal skin tags are treated using a variety of methods, ranging from non-invasive to surgical procedures. Treatment options are determined by factors such as the size of the skin tag, the individual’s level of comfort, and the recommendation of a healthcare professional. Let’s take a closer look at the various treatment options for anal skin tags:
Observation and monitoring:
A healthcare professional may recommend a wait-and-see approach in some cases, particularly when anal skin tags are small, painless, and not causing any discomfort. Without immediate intervention, anal skin tags that are not bothersome or symptomatic can be monitored. However, it is critical to monitor any changes in size, color, or symptoms and to consult a healthcare professional if there is any cause for concern.
Cryotherapy is a procedure that involves freezing the anal skin tag using liquid nitrogen or another freezing agent. The freezing temperatures destroy the cells, causing the skin tag to fall off. Cryotherapy is a safe and effective in-office procedure that may require more than one session to complete.
Ligation involves tying off the base of the anal skin tag with a sterile thread or string, cutting off its blood supply. The skin tag eventually dries up and falls off without a blood supply. This method is usually performed by a healthcare professional and can be an effective treatment option for small anal skin tags.
Cauterization is a procedure in which a healthcare professional uses a heated instrument (electrocautery) to burn off the anal skin tag. Heat seals the blood vessels, reducing bleeding and hastening healing. Cauterization is commonly used for larger skin tags and can be done as an outpatient procedure.
Surgical excision entails physically removing the anal skin tag with scissors or a scalpel. To minimize discomfort, this procedure is usually performed under local anesthesia. Excision is appropriate for larger or more bothersome skin tags, and the removed tissue can be sent for further examination (biopsy) if required.
Laser therapy is another option for removing anal skin tags. The laser emits a focused beam of light that vaporizes the tissue, removing the skin tag effectively. When compared to traditional excision, laser treatment can be performed as an outpatient procedure and may result in less bleeding and faster healing.
Expert Tips for Anal Skin Tag Removal:
First and foremost, seek the advice of a healthcare professional. If you notice any growths around the anal area, you should see a doctor right away for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. They can determine whether the growth is an anal skin tag or another condition and advise you on the best course of action.
Regardless of the method used to remove the hair, proper post-removal care is essential to avoid complications and promote healing. This could include:
To avoid infection, keep the area clean and dry.
Avoiding activities like excessive sitting or strenuous exercise that may irritate the treated area.
Follow any wound care instructions given to you by a healthcare professional.
Keep an eye on the treated area for signs of infection or other complications, and seek medical attention if necessary.
Dr. Kamrava – The Anal Skin Tag Expert
Contact our office today to schedule your consultation with Dr. Kamrava, the expert in anal skin tag treatment. Experience compassionate care and personalized treatment for optimal results. Take the first step towards improved comfort and confidence. Call now to book your appointment!