Anal stenosis, which is a narrowing of the anal canal that makes it difficult to pass stool, can lead to serious complications if left untreated. Also referred to as anal stricture, this condition occurs when the muscles in the anus – which expand and contract to regulate the passage of fecal material – narrow.

Symptoms of Anal Stenosis

The symptoms of anal stenosis indicate that the anal canal isn’t functioning properly. Also referred to as anal stricture, anal stenosis is characterized by a narrowing of the anal canal wall. This narrowing is most commonly caused by a buildup of scar tissue following anorectal surgery. For example, following surgery to remove hemorrhoids, scar tissue can form and eventually inhibit the individual’s ability to pass stool normally.

  • Strenuous, painful, or infrequent bowel movements
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Diarrhea
  • Stool leakage (incontinence)
  • Anal discomfort
  • Anal or rectal tearing