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Anal Abscess Symptoms & Diagnosis


If you experience any of these symptoms do not assume it is due to an anal abscess. These symptoms may be caused by other health conditions. If you experience any one of them, discuss them with your doctor.

Symptoms include:

In the case of an abscess near the surface of the skin on the buttocks:

  • Pain and tenderness radiating from the location of the abscess
  • Visible redness and swelling
  • Fever

In the case of an abscess located deeper within the rectum:

  • Pain in the lower abdomen
  • Swelling in the rectum that can be seen during examination of the rectum
  • Fever

Anal abscesses may be accompanied by pain with stool and/or stool incontinence (inability to restrain stools).


Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history, and perform a physical exam. While your doctor will be able to see an abscess near the surface of the skin, he or she may need to exam the rectum with a gloved finger to determine the presence of a deeper abscess.

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