Anal thrombosis (anal venous thrombosis) is a painful swelling in the anal area caused by a venous blood clot. The differentiation to hemorrhoids is often not easy. Unlike hemorrhoids, anal thromboses are very painful and do not prolapse out of the anal canal. Due to the high level of suffering, patients often have a strong desire for treatment. Here you read all important information about anal thrombosis.
What is an anal thrombosis?
Anal thrombosis (anal venous thrombosis) has also been called “external hemorrhoids” in the past. However, there are two different clinical pictures with different complaints and developmental mechanisms in the case of anal thromboses and hemorrhoids:
Hemorrhoids and thrombosis of the anus are both caused by blood clots in a blood vessel. The hemorrhoids, however, are affected by fine arterial plexuses in the anal canal, which play a role in the occlusive mechanism of the anus. On the other hand, anal thrombosis affects the venous plexus around the anus. This means that in the case of anal thrombosis, the palpable nodes are not located in the anal canal (as with hemorrhoids), but directly at the exit and are therefore visible at all times. Hemorrhoids are only visible from outside in advanced stages – they come out of the anal canal (severity grade 2, 3) or are permanently arched outwards (grade 4) with increased abdominal pressure (for example when pressing during bowel movements).
Other than hemorrhoids, anal thrombosis is also very painful, so sitting is almost impossible. In hemorrhoids, on the other hand, unpleasant itching and pressure are prevalent.
How does the anal thrombosis develop?
The nodes on the edge of the anus are blood clots in the small veins that are found around the anus. Especially high abdominal pressure contributes to their development. This is caused by chronic constipation, overweight or long-term excessive pressing exercises, such as those used in strength training. Even during pregnancy, the abdominal pressure is increased and the unborn child rests on the venous plexus on the anus. The birth process, it comes in addition to strong pressing. Hemorrhoids and anal thrombosis are therefore a common problem during pregnancy and after delivery.
Long sitting increases venous pressure and prevents the blood from draining well from the anal veins.
In addition, as for any type of thrombosis and for anal thrombosis general risk factors apply such as little exercise, vascular disease and blood clotting disorders. The intake of the anti-baby pill is associated with a general risk of thrombosis. Other hormonal influences such as the monthly hormone fluctuations in women may also favor anal thrombosis.
How is anal thrombosis treated?
Thrombosis of the anus can be treated in a variety of ways, depending on its size and pain. A fresh thrombosis, the doctor can pierce under anesthesia to remove the blood clot. The wound usually heals without consequences. A minor thrombosis can also be treated with ointments and painkillers.
How to avoid an anal thrombosis?
Since long sitting and high abdominal pressure (pressing exercises in weight training, pressing during bowel movements) are risk factors for the development of anal thrombosis, one should limit both as possible.
Also, frequent constipation promotes an anal venous thrombosis: it can often be counteracted by more physical activity and a change in diet. If this does not help, you can soften the stool with the help of swelling agents. Ask your doctor how to control your constipation.
Mechanical stress on the anus (as in anal intercourse) is another risk factor involved in the onset of a Analthrombose plays a role and should therefore be avoided.