An anal fissure is a tear in the lining of your anus or anal canal, the lowest part of your intestinal tract. It can make bowel movements very painful, and can even cause pain that lasts for hours after you've gone to the bathroom. You may even try to avoid the bathroom to prevent the pain.
An anal fissure is usually a short-term (or acute) problem, with symptoms that last 6 weeks or less. It's considered chronic when symptoms last for more than 6 weeks. Chronic anal fissures may be harder to treat and may be a symptom of another condition, such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis.
There is no clear evidence to suggest that the stress of modern life or a steady diet of fast food causes ulcers in the stomach and small intestine, but they are nonetheless common in our society: About one out of every 10 Americans will suffer from the burning, gnawing abdominal pain of a peptic (or gastric) ulcer at some point in life.
Peptic ulcers are holes or breaks in the protective lining of the duodenum (the upper part of the small intestine) or the stomach -- areas that come into contact...