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My intention with this post is to speak about the successes and failures of trying to heal my Chronic Anal Fissure thus far. I will share what has worked, what I've learned, and what has not worked.
I also want to ask some questions about things I haven't tried yet that will hopefully lead to a full recovery and to me resuming a normal life.
FIRST, a little background about me and my experience.
I am a 25yo Male, I am active and follow a plant based/vegan diet.
The symptoms of my Chronic Anal Fissure began in early February 2020. The exact cause I am unsure of, however, I believe that bike-riding, dryness of the anus, stressful period of work and personal life, plus some constipation and straining during Bowel Movements, led to the formation of the anal fissure.
After BMs with blood and anal pain that wouldn't go away (which you are all familiar feels like you are being stabbed in the anus with a knife), I finally went to the Urgent Care.
After initially being misdiagnosed with a Hemorrhoid/Pile, I eventually saw a GI specialist. My anal fissure is deep inside my anus. After a proper diagnosis, I was prescribed a 2% Diltiazem/Lidocaine compound cream. This cream was not covered my insurance (I am American), and it costed $140, however it was well worth it. As it helped me get beyond the initial, very difficult and painful initial phase of healing the Anal Fissure. This cream, as well as taking hot bathes for 15-30 minutes, helped to calm anal spasms and greatly relieve the pain.
I found that my stool was still too hard and would re-aggravate and re-open the fissure. I was told to take 2 tablespoons of Benefiber in the morning. I also began eating Prunes in the evening before bed. My BMs usually take place in the morning.
I also found that sitting and exercising (Running, Pull-ups, sports, etc.) would also re-aggravate and re-open the fissure. Even though the GI specialist said I should start to resume normal activity.
This forum and community has been very helpful in providing me information and advice on how to deal with, cope with, and heal the fissure. I want to thank those and also share the posts that I have found most helpful or with methods that were successful or promising.
- Nazy78 - https://patient.info/forums/discuss/healing-a-chronic-anal-fissure-451542
- crisler - https://patient.info/forums/discuss/-long-my-anal-fissure-success-story-this-might-be-your-cure--335279
- freeadvicepls - https://patient.info/forums/discuss/-long-please-read-how-i-m-healing-my-anal-fissure-for-a-week-678056
- bryan268 - https://patient.info/forums/discuss/how-i-cured-my-chronic-fissure-after-2-years--516536
While I am not completely healed yet and my Anal Fissure is now official Chronic (being that it has been more than 4 months now). And despite multiple relapses (at least 5), I remain optimistic and have been free of pain, blood and itchiness for the past month.
I realize that every case is different and I can only speak to my experience, But
Here is what I have learned and done so far that has been helpful. Most of which I learned the hard way.
WHAT DIDN'T WORK
Medicinal Cream Helps but Is Not Everything - the 2% Diltiazem/Lidocaine compound cream was helpful, but did not completely close up the fissure. It did help with pain and spasms, and maybe I didn't take it long enough or consistently enough, but it can be itchy and uncomfortable, it is expensive and it expires. I also believe you CAN heal without it, however, it was helpful for me initially.
Exercise - Doctors say exercise helps with blood flow and tissue regeneration, however, exercise was NOT helpful for me. I have tried to limit my movement as much as possible, only walking very slowly.
ADVICE/ THINGS THAT HAVE HELPED ME
Go to the Doctor right away - the longer you wait, the more you risk of developing a Chronic Anal Fissure (like me). When properly diagnosis, creams and medicines that help aid the process of healing making it more comfortable and manageable.
Change Your Diet - cut out food that makes your stool hard and difficult to pass.
Take Hot Bathes to relieve Anal Spasms - at least 15 to 30 minutes
Use Vaseline/ Petroleum Jelly/ Coconut Oil or some equivalent before BM
Use a Stool Softener - I use Benefiber, however I may switch because I want my stool to be even softer (advice welcome!)
Eat PRUNES! - Prunes helped make my poop soft and allowed me to not "open" as much during a BM. With Prunes you can push the poop out lightly and use your legs and sphincter to drop the poop out. This was absolutely crucial to me getting out of the pain and blood phase. Every time I have relapsed I have done this and within a week or so I am no longer in pain.
Don't Sit - sitting very much aggravates my fissure. When sitting in the car I use 2 pillows and push my legs in my car so I can be standing. I try to be standing or laying down as much as possible. Especially don't sit on hard surfaces. Only sit on the toilet as long as necessary.
Breathe and Relax - spasm, tight anus, strain during BM, stress in general. All of these factors contribute to the worsen of the anal fissure. Even during urination, do not strain. I recommend meditating (at least 10 minutes of just breathing, no distractions) before and after BM and as necessary. You must relax. Stress is not good for anal fissures. Breathe and relax. I know it's difficult, we can do this!
- I still feel my stool is too hard. Benefiber doesn't make my poop soft enough, but without it is much worse. I am going to try switching to Psyllium Husk, maybe Konsyl specially. I want have very soft, mud-like poops. I have a high fiber diet, because I am vegan, but any supplements beside Benefiber? I do not want to take laxative pills, because I need something I can do for a longer period of time.
**What can I do to make my stool softer? **
**Has anyone had success with any of the following creams/ gels? **
In most of the success stories above they reference these. I am skeptical about anti-septic creams because I have heard it prevents healing and good bacteria growth, however there seems to be some success.
Zinc Cream ?
Coconut Oil ?
Many success stories include fasting. I am strongly considering doing a Water Fast or a Liquid- only (water, soup, juice) diet, just to get over the last hump. In post #2 above, he references a water fast with vitamins A & C, which promoted healing. I don't want to endanger myself or make the fissure worse. But if this can help, I am open to doing an extended fast.
Any success fasting?
Thank you for reading, commenting and sharing. Stay hopeful, I have wanted to give up on everything at times. But, I have hope. I feel as though I have found a regimen that works for me, and I want to continue to improve upon it. This has helped me be able to live more comfortably, without blood and without pain.
I will continue to update you all on my process and recovery, and provide any information that has been helpful. Hopefully I have a full recovery, and we can all help each other find the formula that works for each of us!
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