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Dr. Muneeb Ali
Dr. Muneeb Ali, Intensivist
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 2748
Experience:  MBBS, MD, MCCM.Currently working in Critical Care Medicine with 10 year experience in Medicine
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What causes anal sphincter cramps Im 58 I have had then

Resolved Question:

What causes anal sphincter cramps?
I'm 58 I have had then off and on since my late 20's.
Usually at night. They can be painfull. Massage and or warm water provide relief.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Muneeb Ali replied 6 years ago.
Sorry to hear about your problem,

Can you tell me do you have any bleeding from the anus?
Any growths aorund it?
Any history of hemorrhoids?
Any medical conditions?
How often do the cramps occur?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

I have had bouts of hemroids since my late 20s.

Yes I have had bleeding in the past as well.

I have had a colonoscopy recently. All is well.

I also had a section of coln removed 2 years ago due to diverticular disease.

However, The cramps have come and gone since my lat 20s most usually at night.

Expert:  Dr. Muneeb Ali replied 6 years ago.
Thanks for the additional information,

i would mention hemorrhoids as a cause for your cramps as they are one of the commonest causes for this sort of phenomenon. However since you say that this problem predates the hemorrghoids then i would consider other possiblities as well. one of these possiblities is Proctalgia Fugax.

Proctalgia fugax is defined as sudden, severe pain in the anorectal region lasting several seconds or minutes, and then disappearing completely. The etiology is not well defined.

Attacks are infrequent, occurring less than five times per year in about one-half of patients Patients are asymptomatic between episodes . The discomfort can occur during the day or night, although it is not typically associated with bowel movements.

There is no known cause for proctalgia fugax, but it is thought to be related to a muscle spasm of the rectum. There is also no known cure.

There are remedies which range from warm baths (if the pain lasts long enough to draw a bath), relaxation techniques, and gentle massage of the anus. It has been suggested that salbutamol may shorten the duration of attacks, although its effectiveness in this capacity remains unproven.


Sedatives and antispasmodic drugs have been used to obtain pain relief.

After the onset of an episode, the most comforting measure to combat the pain is often to attempt defaecation for as long as the pain lasts, even if defaecation will not occur.

This is most likely possiblity if we discount the possiblity of hemorrhoids. I hope this answers your question

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