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Anal Fulguration

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jan 5, 2023.

What is anal fulguration?

Anal fulguration is a procedure to destroy growths. The procedure may be used to treat problems such as anal warts and some forms of cancer. Your healthcare provider will use a laser or electrocautery device to create energy. The energy makes heat that destroys tissue.

Abdominal Organs

How do I prepare for the procedure?

  • Your healthcare provider will tell you how to prepare. He or she may tell you not to eat or drink anything the night before the procedure. Arrange to have someone drive you home from the procedure.
  • You may need to use an enema before your procedure. An enema empties your bowels. Your provider will tell you when to use an enema.
  • Tell your provider about all medicines you currently take. He or she will tell you if you need to stop any medicine for the procedure, and when to stop. He or she will tell you which medicines to take or not take on the day of your procedure.
  • You may need to have abdominal x-rays, a CT scan, ultrasound, or colonoscopy. Other tests may also be needed, such as chest x-ray, electrocardiogram (ECG), or blood or urine tests.

What will happen during the procedure?

  • You may be given general anesthesia to keep you asleep and pain free during your procedure. You may instead be given local anesthesia. With local anesthesia, you will not feel pain, but you may be able to feel some pressure during your procedure.
  • An anoscope will be placed into your anus. An anoscope is a small tube with a light and magnifying camera on the end. Your healthcare provider will look at the walls of your anus as the scope moves into place.
  • A laser or other device will be used to destroy tissue. Your provider may need to treat more than 1 area.

What should I expect after the procedure?

  • You will be taken to a recovery room until you are fully awake. Do not get out of bed until healthcare providers say it is okay. When providers see that you are okay, you will be taken back to your hospital room.
  • You will be helped to walk around after surgery. Movement helps prevent blood clots.
  • You may have discharge and a small amount of blood from your anus. This is normal. Your healthcare provider will tell you how long to expect discharge and bleeding, and what to do if it gets worse.
  • Medicines may be given to prevent or treat pain or nausea. Blood thinning medicine may be given to help prevent blood clots. You may also need medicine to make it easier to have a bowel movement. This medicine can also help prevent constipation.

What are the risks of anal fulguration?

You may bleed more than expected or develop an infection. Muscles in your rectum and anus may be damaged during surgery. This may make it hard to control your bowel movements. You may have scarring in the procedure area. Tissue that was destroyed may come back. You may need another fulguration if this happens.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.