Crohn's Disease Forum » Your Story » Success Stories » Success with Healing Perianal Recurrent Abscess

07-04-2015, 01:41 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Toronto, Ontario

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Success with Healing Perianal Recurrent Abscess

Hi there,

This forum helped me understand my recurrent perianal abscess and so I thought I would post in the hope that maybe my story can help you if you are currently suffering with this. There is hope. Although, for a long time I wasn't convinced this would ever heal. And then it did.

Here's my story. I am a 30 year old woman. I will try to be brief, but it won't be too Approximately 3 years ago, I developed my first perianal abscess. At first, I wasn't sure if I was getting a hemorrhoid or what was going on. The pain and bulge were getting bigger and I couldn't sit. By day 3 or so, I was terrified and didn't want to go to the ER. Eventually, the pain became so bad that I had no choice and so off to the ER I went. They aren't too smart at the ER. I had scoured the internet and this forum and had already self diagnosed and was unimpressed when the ER doctor advised me I most likely had a pilondial cyst. I advised him he was incorrect and asked for a general surgery consult. They came down and diagnosed the perianal abscess. The worst I&D occurred shortly after. It was excruciating and I was screaming as they had only given me a sedative. If you've never had this procedure, you need to self advocate and ask for strong pain killers before the I&D. The worst part in my opinion is the ladicaine injections. I was packed and advised to go home and remove the packing after 24 hours hours and do sitz baths. It seemed to heal and then approximately 6 months later, it was back. Again, off to the hospital I went for another fun I&D. This time they packed me and sent me home with a nurse referral to change the packing over the next 4-6 weeks daily so that it could heal from the inside out. In my opinion, it really doesn't matter if you get packed or not, it didn't seem to make any difference for me. It healed and several months later, it came back again. Always in the same place. Over the next 2 years, I had countless I&D's, maybe approximately 10. I must say though that each time it re-occured, the pain was less. I was eventually referred to a general surgeon who specialized in fissures/fistulas etc., who did a sigmoidoscopy and an MRI in search of the all elusive fistula. Both tests came back negative. The surgeon was convinced I had a fistula regardless of the negative tests. He wanted to take me to surgery and see if he could insert a seton. Now, after reading the horror stories about setons, my response was a polite see you later, doc.

I must say that during this time, I had tried a lot of different things including seeing a naturopath. I had tried taking sublingual B12, apple cider vinegar, curcumin, sitz baths with epsom salt, and went on the specific carbohydrate diet after buying the "breaking the vicious cycle" book. I also temporarily quit smoking and drinking (wine) during this time. It's a good book and I highly recommend buying it. It really explains a lot. I also ensured my hygiene was extra on point and washed after every BM, and switched to wet wipes altogether. I am a female, and used to wax to a full brazillian and stopped that and switched to shaving, and then stopped shaving that area altogether to see if the waxing was causing the problem. Nothing helped.

I had read that you should always get an I&D because your risk for fistula decreases. Every abscess is a 50% risk for getting a fistula if you don't already have one and so I always went to the ER. One day, I was sitting on the couch having coffee about the go to the ER to have my abscess drained when suddenly the pain went away. It had burst on it's own, interestingly enough in the same place they usually cut it open. At this point, the abscess would fill up pretty large, approximately 3-4 cm's long, 2-4 cm's wide and up to approx. 3 cm's high.
I cleaned myself up in the shower and booked an appointment with my regular GP to see if everything was ok. He said it had pretty much emptied and would probably drain a bit more. I kept it clean with sticking gauze it between my butt cheeks and sitzing. Nothing had worked so far and I was getting frustrated. Oh and I had tried the flagyl/cipro cocktails but the antibiotics just made me horribly sick and I could never finish them. They also didn't really seem to help, other than progressing the abscess to become 'ripe enough to cut'.

The next time I had it come back, I thought...hmm...maybe I can wait it out and it will burst again and then that will save me the annoying trip to the ER? And so I waited, and it burst again. Every time it would fill up, I would let it burst. I started noticing that every time it came back every 1-3 months after bursting, it would be less painful and smaller. Eventually, it got to the point where it would fill up and burst every couple of weeks for about 4-6 months but it didn't even bother me at all because it got to the point where it was so small like a large pimple and the pain was very very minimal. I thought, okay, I can live like this for a while instead of having a seton. And then, one day, it stopped filling up. It healed. It's been 4 months or so and it's completely gone. I don't get the shooting pains in that area anymore or the itchiness.

For the ladies, I have gone back to getting waxed however, no longer wax or shave in the anal area. I recommend you do not shave or wax that area as it seems to irritate it.

I do not know what caused this 2-3 year ordeal, and I am not a medical professional. I will say, that with all the natural remedies and all the antibiotics and all the I&D's, packing and the rest, letting it burst on it's own and not messing with it seemed to let it heal.

I do take milk thistle now which helps with liver detoxification. I have noticed that this clears up my skin. When your liver is not at optimum, all sorts of issues arise because it's not able to clear the toxins from your body.

I don't know if this will help anyone, but maybe it will.
07-04-2015, 03:52 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Ontario

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Hi and welcome,
I've had many fistulas and abscesses, they are awful. I'd never want to be awake for an I & D...I can't imagine what you went through. (Mine are done in surgery).

Do you plan on getting this investigated further to find the cause?
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07-04-2015, 05:03 PM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Toronto, Ontario

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At this time, I do not plan on investigating further. I am sorry to hear about your fistulas and abscesses. Hopefully anybody suffering with these horrific illnesses gets relief and healing.

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