An Introduction to Anal Skin Tags


What is a skin tag? Anal skin tags are small growths or lumps that form around the opening of the anus. Also known as anal tabs orΒ  acrochordon, these tiny flaps of excess skin are a variation of a general condition known as skin tags.

These kind of growths can develop in places where your skin is frequently rubbed or irritated, including the neck, back, chest, groin area and armpits. They can also appear on the eyelids and other parts of your face.

Like other types of skin tags, anal growths first emerge as soft flesh-colored bumps. They can eventually grow to about the size of a grain of rice, with a smooth or irregular surface that appears darker than the surrounding skin.

The tags are attached to the anal area by a flexible piece of tissue known as a stalk or peduncle. After they develop, anal tags will remain on your skin unless they are removed.

Why and when do they occur?

Like other kinds of skin tags, those affecting the anal area are fairly common. They are often associated with prior infections, injuries or medical procedures involving the anorectal region.

Hemorrhoids, particularly if left untreated, are among the most common contributing factors that lead to anal skin tags. However, unlike other skin tags, those found around the anal opening can indicate more serious problems, such as a tear in the anal canal or a blocked anal gland.

In addition, anal growths can become more easily irritated than tags found on other parts of the body. This is due to the frequent presence of fecal matter in the region, as well as the activity associated with expelling the waste from your body, including sanitizing the region through frequent wiping motions.

Due to the unique location of these tags and sanitary factors, anal tags, unlike other skin growths, are more susceptible to causing prominent symptoms like pain, itching, burning and discomfort.

Are they cureable / removeable?

Although the presence of anal skin tags may suggest a larger problem with the anorectal area, the condition by itself is not dangerous to your overall health. However, since they can be uncomfortable or embarrassing, you may opt to have them removed by a medical professional.

One of the more common methods is to have them detached surgically with a laser, scissors, or a scalpel. Other methods for skin tag removal include the use of liquid nitrogen to freeze the growth and electric current to burn it off your body.

If you’re looking for a less intrusive solution, there are a series of natural remedies you can use to try to remove anal skin tags. Some holistic practitioners recommend applying a natural astringent like tea tree oil or apple cider vinegar to the tag.

In addition, there are a few all-natural topical treatments available at health food and specialty stores that can be used to help remove the growth.

Can they be prevented?

Currently, there is no sure-fire method for preventing anal skin tags. However, there are things you can do to reduce your chances of developing hemorrhoids and other anorectal conditions that can contribute to anal tags.

Hemorrhoids are attributed to irregularity and straining while attempting to eliminate solid waste. Increasing your daily intake of water and fiber-rich foods like fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains can help you maintain a healthy colon and gastrointestinal system. In addition, getting regular exercise can promote proper circulation and improve your body’s overall function.

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  1. Hi Ingela, thank you for this information. It’s really nice to read about those things without having to see horrifying pictures. πŸ™‚

    I’ve had a terrible outbreak of herpes around my anus five months ago (astonishingly enough, the test results showed it was not genital herpes, but oral herpes). Anyhow, the tissue in this area healed well, but is still very weak and I still have to be very careful not to force bowel movement, because occasional bleeding might occur. Just one month ago, I started noticing skin tags in this area. They’re slightly growing and also seem to be getting more. I freaked out after noticing them because my outbreak of herpes had been such a painful experience.
    The explanation in this article of why they occur makes total sense to me and it’s relieving to read that they’re not an infection, fungus, warts, or who knows what else.
    I will try some natural remedies like tee tree oil over the next weeks and go see a physician as soon as I can to examinate the whole anorectal condition. It’s good you pointed out that these skin tags might be indicators for an overall bad condition of your colon.

    Both, the herpes and the skin tags, appeared when I was very stressed. I can really recommend to anybody who is suffering from the same to calm down, analyse the reasons for your stress and deal with them. Neglecting your problems will make your anal problems worse.
    Also see to boosting your immune system however you can (herbal teas, vitamins, etc.), you will get results within a week. I was also recommended to contract my anus regularly as to keep the blood circulating and the healing going.
    And finally: eating well and drinking enough water and less coffee are really the key to a healthy hole.

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