Dermatology and Pruritus Ani

Konstantin Umanskiy, Evangelos Messaris
Dermatology and Pruritus Ani is a topic covered in the ASCRS Textbook of Colon and Rectal Surgery.

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Key Concepts

  • Pruritus ani often results in considerable emotional and physical distress and significantly affects the patient’s quality of life.
  • A detailed and complete history and physical examination can help to identify a specific etiology in 75% of cases.
  • Culture swabs and skin biopsy are important adjuncts to physical examination.
  • In most cases, initial therapeutic approach is aimed at improvement of anal hygiene, dietary modification, and toileting habits.
  • The patient’s expectations should be set to anticipate slow improvement of their symptoms.
  • Various topical and systemic therapeutic modalities can be offered sequentially with emphasis on incremental improvement rather than complete resolution of symptoms.

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Key Concepts

  • Pruritus ani often results in considerable emotional and physical distress and significantly affects the patient’s quality of life.
  • A detailed and complete history and physical examination can help to identify a specific etiology in 75% of cases.
  • Culture swabs and skin biopsy are important adjuncts to physical examination.
  • In most cases, initial therapeutic approach is aimed at improvement of anal hygiene, dietary modification, and toileting habits.
  • The patient’s expectations should be set to anticipate slow improvement of their symptoms.
  • Various topical and systemic therapeutic modalities can be offered sequentially with emphasis on incremental improvement rather than complete resolution of symptoms.

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Last updated: January 26, 2022