Journal of Cutaneous and Aesthetic Surgery
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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2008  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 58-63

Pharmacological sphincterotomy for chronic anal fissures by botulinum toxin A


Department of Dermatology and Allergology, Hospital Dresden-Friedrichstadt, Academic Teaching Hospital of the University of Dresden, Friedrichstrasse 41, Dresden, Germany

Correspondence Address:
Uwe Wollina
Department of Dermatology and Allergology, Hospital Dresden-Friedrichstadt, Academic Teaching Hospital of the University of Dresden, Friedrichstrasse 41, 01067 Dresden
Germany
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0974-2077.44160

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Chronic anal fissure is a common proctologic disease. Botulinum toxin (BTX) can be used for temporary chemical denervation to treat this painful disorder. Its application is by intramuscular injections into either the external or internal anal sphincter muscle. The mode of action, application techniques, and possible complications or adverse effects of BTX therapy are discussed in this report. The healing rate is dependent on the BTX dosage. The short-term healing rate (≤ 6 months) is 60-90%, whereas about 50% of the patients show a complete response in long-term follow-up studies (> 1 year). Adverse effects are generally mild, but relapses occur more often than with surgery. Conservative therapy is currently considered as a first-line treatment. With increasing evidence for its efficacy, BTX can now be considered among the first-line nonsurgical treatements. Although, surgical management by lateral sphincterotomy is the most effective treatment, it shows a higher incidence of incontinence and greater general morbidity rate than BTX. BTX is a useful alternative to surgery and in many cases, surgery can be avoided with the use of BTX.


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