Anal or Rectal Pain

The anus is small but sensitive, and pain in this area can be hard to pinpoint or describe. Sometimes the pain orginates in the anus but may be felt higher up in the rectum, or vice versa.

Common causes of anal or rectal pain
  • Anal fissure

  • Hemorrhoids, especially thrombosed external hemorrhoids

  • Anal abscess and fistula

  • Perianal skin irritation

  • Proctitis

  • Rectal prolapse

  • Pelvic pain syndrome (see pelvic floor dysfunction)

  • Anal cancer

  • Rectal cancer

When you should get evaluated for anal or rectal pain

If your pain is severe or getting worse, you should see a healthcare provider as soon as possible. Pain that is milder but recurring or not resolving should also be evaluated. It is important to mention to your doctor if you notice other symptoms such as bleeding, abnormal discharge, change in bowel pattern (contipation or diarrhea), feeling of a mass or lump, etc.

Helpful links:


*American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons