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What Are My Treatment Options for a Perianal Abscess? By Dean Pappas M.D. on April 09, 2020

Female nurse speaks to older female patient in a medical clinicA perianal abscess is a type of anal abscess. The swelling is often the result of infection from the anal glands. The condition is often painful but highly treatable.

The team at Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York offers discreet and effective care for perianal abscess. Our six locations, which include Nesconset, NY, and East Setauket, NY, serve patients throughout the area. Simply visit the office nearest you to receive prompt treatment of your anal abscess or colorectal health problems. Read on to learn more about perianal abscess treatment.

Treatment Options for Perianal Abscess

A perianal abscess rarely heals on its own. If you are suffering from an abscess (pocket of infection), prompt treatment at one of our six offices is your best bet for finding relief.

Once you arrive, your symptoms will be examined and the cause of your discomfort will be diagnosed. Perianal abscess is a common type of anal abscess. Antibiotics are often ineffective as a treatment for perianal abscess. To treat the condition, the abscess will likely need to be surgically drained.

Abscess Treatment

After numbing the treatment site using a local anesthetic, one of our doctors will make an incision to drain pus from the infected cavity. This step also relieves pressure near the anus and provides relief for the patient.

A deep abscess may require an anesthesiologist and hospitalization. However, most patients will be able to return home to recover following the treatment.

Fistula Treatment

Around half of patients who have an anal abscess will develop a fistula. The tunnel connects the anal glad to the surface of the skin nearby. If a fistula is present, it will need to be treated to prevent the return of a perianal abscess.

Correcting a fistula requires surgery. The external and internal openings of the tunnel will be surgically joined. Most fistula surgeries are performed on an outpatient basis.


Recovery from fistula treatment requires a few days of rest. Time missed from school or work is typically minimal, and discomfort can be managed with pain pills. Following your recovery guidelines closely is the best way to ensure that you do not experience severe side effects or complications.

After abscess treatment or fistula surgery, the affected area should be soaked in warm water (a sitz bath) three or four times a day. Stool softeners may prevent discomfort.

How to Prevent the Return of a Perianal Abscess

Once the abscess or fistula heals, the condition typically does not reoccur. Our doctors will provide you with advice on how to prevent the occurrence of a perianal abscess.

Patients should know risk factors for perianal abscess, which include:

  • Colitis (a chronic digestive disease)
  • Non-use of condoms during sexual intercourse
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Diabetes
  • Use of certain medications
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease

Schedule Your Colorectal Consultation Today

A perianal abscess will typically not heal on its own. The doctors of Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York are board-certified and offer a wide range of services. To schedule your next visit, please contact our office online or call (516) 248-2422.

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Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York staff

Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York

The Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York provide comfortable, discreet, and private care from five locations throughout Long Island and Queens. Every member of our team is a respected leader in their field, and each is certified by both the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery. We provide a complete set of services related to your colorectal health, including:

To request a consultation with our physicians, please fill out our online form or call (516) 248-2422.

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