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Symptoms and Signs of Anal Itching

Doctor's Notes on Anal Itching

Anal itching is itching around the anus. Medically, anal itching is referred to as pruritus ani. There are a number of conditions that can cause anal itching. Causes can include consumption of spicy foods, hemorrhoids, anal fissures, certain medications, and infestations with pinworms (Enterobius vermicularis).  

The itch of anal itching can be mild or severe. The severity of the itching often worsens with any trauma to the area that is caused by scratching. Associated symptoms and signs will depend on the cause of the itch. Possible associated symptoms can include anal or rectal bleeding, enlarged blood vessels around the anal opening (hemorrhoids) irritation of the skin around the anus, diarrhea, burning, itching of the penis or vagina, redness, leakage of stool (feces), and rectal or anal pain.

Medical Author:
Medically Reviewed on 3/11/2019


Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.