Intended for healthcare professionals

Research Article

Treatment of first episodes of acute anal fissure: prospective randomised study of lignocaine ointment versus hydrocortisone ointment or warm sitz baths plus bran.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1986; 292 doi: (Published 03 May 1986) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1986;292:1167
  1. S L Jensen


    One hundred and three patients with an acute first episode of posterior anal fissure were randomised to receive a three week trial of lignocaine ointment (n = 33) versus hydrocortisone ointment (n = 35) or warm sitz baths combined with an intake of unprocessed bran (n =35). Seven patients were withdrawn owing to failure to adhere to the trial protocol. After one and two weeks of treatment symptomatic relief was significantly better among patients treated with sitz baths and bran than among patients treated with lignocaine ointment or hydrocortisone ointment. After three weeks there was no difference in symptomatic relief among the three groups. Patients treated with lignocaine, however, had significantly fewer healed fissures (60%) than patients treated with hydrocortisone (82.4%) or warm sitz baths and bran (87%). In this study warm sitz baths plus an intake of unprocessed bran came out as the treatment of choice for an acute first episode of posterior anal fissure. This treatment is cheap, has no potential serious side effects, and brings the best and quickest relief of symptoms.