I feel embarrassed, do l need to seek for medical help?

Yes, you should seek medical attention.

How common is it?

Anorectal lesions / disorders are becoming more frequent nowadays. Prevalence of hemorrhoids are 50% of USA population after the age of 50. Also, it is been reported more than 100,000 of cases per year of anal fistula/abscesses after 40 years of age in the USA. And, from 1% to 5% of USA population have suffered from pruritus ani at least once in their lives.

What can cause dryness to the anal area?

Dryness to the anal area can be caused by certain irritants such as soaps or laundry solutions; some foods such as coffee, chocolate, and citrus; certain sexually transmitted diseases; medications such as colchicine or neomycin; mechanical factors such as fecal soiling or hemorrhoids; infections; dermatologic disorders, including psoriasis or atopic dermatitis; systemic disorders; or malignancy. 

How can I prevent bacterial infections?

Bacterial infections can be reduced or prevented by improving selfcare to the anal area. Also, by limiting peri-anal irritants and avoiding sexually transmitted diseases.

What are the possible complications?

Possible complications include systemic disorders, diverticulitis, neoplastic cell (cancerous) outbursts that can lead to colon cancer.

Is it contagious?

Not contagious just in the case of hemorrhoids but be aware of sexually transmitted diseases that can aggrave your current condition.*

Is the treatment painful?

Treatment can be very painful, in some cases can lead into surgical procedures to alleviate the problem.

How expensive is the treatment? Do I need to be hospitalized? Do I need to take pain killers or analgesics? Do I need to be evaluated for cancer?

Treatment cost options range from topical over the counter (OTC) medications, prescription medications ultimately into surgical intervention/hospitalisation costs. Treatment with NSAIDs/topical analgesic creams/cocktails can be very costly and have adverse effects. Evaluations for further diagnostics are done by your medical health provider.*

How much time I need to heal? How fast can I overcome the symptoms?

Relieve on the symptoms vary from patient to patient and also from the degree of the lesion/condition you are experiencing. You should contact your medical health provider for a consultation.*

Can a change in diet help?

A change in diet can be helpful in reducing the intake of common irritants but this can be determined by your health care provider.*
* http://www.colonrectal.org/services.cfm/sid:6591/Anorectal_Disorders/index.html

Does constipation aggravates the symptoms?

Yes, constipation can aggravate symptoms of anal mucosal disorders.

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