Anal skin tags, or rectal skin tags, are common and usually harmless growths that hang off the skin around the outside of the anus. Anal skin tags may also be called hypertrophied papillae or fibro epithelial polyps. They, may even, grow over the buttocks due to the large sizes of buttocks because they easily fold and form creases.
Like tags on other parts of the body such as face, neck, underarms etc. perineal or skin tags on anus are normally harmless and may not pose any medical problem or risk. However, it might be difficult to properly diagnose them yourselves and it should be a good idea to discuss it with your doctor especially if you find many them, or find them bleeding, irritating or inflammatory.
They are sometimes associated with other anorectal problems. Typically, anal skin tags don’t present with any other symptoms. However, they can cause discomfort or itching, and may be considered unsightly. Additionally, they may become irritated or bleed from friction. There is a hygienic concern as well, as fecal matter can accumulate beneath anal skin tags. Your doctor can remove anal skin tags for you. Just like other tags these can be removed by your doctor by using local surgery, freezing or burning.
- See your doctor for confirmation that your growth is, in fact, an anal skin tag. Skin tags can be confused with viral warts and a skin infection known as molluscum contagiosum. Your doctor will rule out other growths, and possibly perform a biopsy if there is any suspicion of skin cancer.
- Have an anoscopy, a procedure for examining the anus, anal canal and lower rectum. An anoscopy checks for hemorrhoids, infections, tumors, inflammation, anal polyps and other skin problems. It can locate other anal skin tags as well. An anoscope, a lubricated tube with a light at the end, is inserted a few inches into the rectum, explains the MedlinePlus. There will likely be some discomfort, and you may feel the urge to have a bowel movement. Preparation may include emptying the bowels with a laxative or enema, and there is little risk or recovery associated with the procedure.
- Choose a method of removal for your anal skin tag by discussing the options with your doctor. Consider her recommendations and information about the various methods available. Your health, medical history and preferences will be taken into consideration, as will the location, size and other characteristics of the growth.
- Undergo the chosen method of removal. Your doctor may simply numb and cut off anal skin tags with a scalpel or surgical scissors. Skin tags can be tied off with a suture in a procedure known as ligation, which eventually causes the tissue to die and fall off. In addition, anal skin tags can be frozen off or burned off with procedures called cryosurgery and electro surgery, respectively. Laser surgery can also sometimes be used for skin tag removal.
Although, surgical are good options, sometimes a simple ready made solution or cream can work wonder to get rid of the problem easily and safely.