Common Questions Answered

Hemorrhoid Q&A

What are anal fissure symptoms?


With anal fissure you may experience sharp, knife-like pain that can last up to a few hours. You will have mild to severe painful bowel movements and possible rectal bleeding. Many describe the feeling of passing shards of glass. Anal fissure can also cause anal itching and irritation.




What is the medical treatment for anal fissure?


To treat anal fissure you can receive a botulinum toxin injection from your doctor. There are also topical solutions such as nifedipine cream, hydrocortisone cream or CBD cream that can be applied to the fissure area for relief of pain symptoms. We recommend taking other measures, like changing your diet to incorporate ground flax seed powder and eating high fiber foods. Relief for anal fissure can additionally be aided by using a “squatty potty” stool while using the bathroom and trying methods like soaking in a sitz bath to help with symptoms.




How to heal an anal fissure?


The surgical option for anal fissure is lateral internal sphincterotomy. Your doctor may also perform an anal manometry test to determine how your anus and rectum is preforming during bowl movements and prescribe other methods for healing, such as a botulinum toxin injection or topical creams like nifedipine cream, hydrocortisone cream or CBD cream. You can also try methods to reduce symptoms like incorporating flax seed powder and high fiber foods into your diet. We also recommend using a “squatty potty” in the bathroom and a soothing sitz bath for relief.




What is the cause of anal fistula?


Anal fistula can be the result of infection near the anus. Causes of anal fistula from infection can stem from side-effects from constipation, metabolic disorders, Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and hormonal imbalance.




What are options for anal fistula treatment?


To treat anal fistula you can undergo a fistulotomy surgery by your doctor. There is also the option to have a ligation of intersphincteric fistula tract (LIFT) procedure to close the fistula opening and remove the infected material. Other treatments for fistula are a mucosal advancement flap (MAF) repair surgery and a less invasive option of a seton placement to help clear the fistula infection.




What is a perianal fistula?


A perianal fistula is infection of the anal gland which leads to drainage of the gland to the outside skin surface, causing a tract infection and abscess.





Fissure and Fistula Q&A

What are anal fissure symptoms?


With anal fissure you may experience sharp, knife-like pain that can last up to a few hours. You will have mild to severe painful bowel movements and possible rectal bleeding. Many describe the feeling of passing shards of glass. Anal fissure can also cause anal itching and irritation.




What is the medical treatment for anal fissure?


To treat anal fissure you can receive a botulinum toxin injection from your doctor. There are also topical solutions such as nifedipine cream, hydrocortisone cream or CBD cream that can be applied to the fissure area for relief of pain symptoms. We recommend taking other measures, like changing your diet to incorporate ground flax seed powder and eating high fiber foods. Relief for anal fissure can additionally be aided by using a “squatty potty” stool while using the bathroom and trying methods like soaking in a sitz bath to help with symptoms.




How to heal an anal fissure?


The surgical option for anal fissure is lateral internal sphincterotomy. Your doctor may also perform an anal manometry test to determine how your anus and rectum is preforming during bowl movements and prescribe other methods for healing, such as a botulinum toxin injection or topical creams like nifedipine cream, hydrocortisone cream or CBD cream. You can also try methods to reduce symptoms like incorporating flax seed powder and high fiber foods into your diet. We also recommend using a “squatty potty” in the bathroom and a soothing sitz bath for relief.




What is the cause of anal fistula?


Anal fistula can be the result of infection near the anus. Causes of anal fistula from infection can stem from side-effects from constipation, metabolic disorders, Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and hormonal imbalance.




What are options for anal fistula treatment?


To treat anal fistula you can undergo a fistulotomy surgery by your doctor. There is also the option to have a ligation of intersphincteric fistula tract (LIFT) procedure to close the fistula opening and remove the infected material. Other treatments for fistula are a mucosal advancement flap (MAF) repair surgery and a less invasive option of a seton placement to help clear the fistula infection.




What is a perianal fistula?


A perianal fistula is infection of the anal gland which leads to drainage of the gland to the outside skin surface, causing a tract infection and abscess.





Fecal Incontinence and IBS Q&A

Who suffers from fecal incontinence?


Most commonly fecal incontinence affects the elderly. Incontinence is also known among persons with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, persons with bladder incontinence, persons with diabetes and those suffering from nerve damage and back injury.




What is bowel incontinence?


Bowel incontinence is known as accidental leakage of bowels or stool. Bowel incontinence symptoms are fecal urgency, gas and bloating and can be caused by constipation and diarrhea.




What are irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms for men?


Symptoms of IBS for men include rectal bleeding, nausea, vomiting, gas and bloating, diarrhea, constipation and abdominal pain.




What causes irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?


The causes of IBS can be related to low fiber diet, lack of water ingestion, lack of exercise, over-eating, artificial sweeteners, junk food and lactose intolerance.




What is the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?


You can help treat IBS by avoiding trigger foods, eating more fiber, drinking plenty of water and staying hydrated, exercising regularly, and avoiding too many carbohydrates. There is also medical therapy that can be recommended by your doctor.




What are the different kinds of colitis?


Colitis comes in many different forms including, microscopic colitis, lymphocytic colitis, C-difficile colitis, Crohn’s colitis, ulcerative colitis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and diverticulitis.





Proctology Q&A

What is a proctologist?


A proctologist is a specialist that treats common ailments and diseases of the anus and rectum including hemorrhoids, anal fissures, anal fistula and abscess, rectocele problems and fecal incontinence etc. This extra training and experience , along with board certification in colorectal surgery can make all the difference for some patients.




What is a colorectal doctor?


A colorectal specialist is a surgeon who has extra fellowship training in treating various diseases of the colon, rectum and anus and is recognized by the American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery. Colorectal doctors specialize in diseases and cancers of the colon and rectum, including surgery options for colorectal cancers, cancer screening, cancer symptoms, and disgnosis and treatment of conditions of the lower digestive tract. Colorectal doctors or colorectal surgeons are sometimes refered to as proctologists.




What causes blood in stool?


Blood in the stool can be caused by bright red bleeding coming from hemorrhoids, anal fissures, fistulae or cancer of the rectum and anus. Bleeding can also come from diverticular problems in the colon, colon cancer and colonic polyps etc. Colitis or gastroenteritis can also cause bleeding that needs to be checked. Upper gastrointestinal bleeding can come from the stomach or small bowel also. Mostly bleeding from these sources is dark brown or black. These symptoms should not be ignored and patients should seek medical help soon.




What are symptoms of rectal cancer?


Rectal cancer is very common and can present with fresh rectal bleeding, rectal pain, anorectal swelling, weight loss and more. Some patients may have a feeling of incomplete evacuation of their bowel movement called “tenesmus” or rectal cramping.




What is gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)?


GERD or Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a common name for a variety of problems that present with symptoms of indigestion including acid brash and heart burn, upper abdominal pain and bloating, atypical chest pain or vomiting and nausea. Some patients report a reflux of undigested food also. It may be caused by increased acid production, mechanical valve problem between the stomach and esophagus (food pipe), or bile acid issues. A specialist can diagnose and treat this disease.




How can I improve my gastrointestinal health?


Our motto at ColoWell America is #ItsAGutFeeling. Gastrointestinal health begins at home with food that we see, smell and ingest. Eating a balanced diet full of nutrients from various plants and vegetables can make all the difference. Avoid eating processed meats and foods with artificial chemicals and preservatives. Adding fiber rich food to the diet is a sure way to boost immunity and improve digestion. Undigested fiber acts as brush for the colon and removes unwanted waste to prevent constipation and bloating. We recommend adding ground or milled flax seed powder to the diet daily. A daily walk, hydration and “portion control” are methods to improve digestive health also.





Privileges and Insurances Q&A

What are ColoWell America's primary medical facilities and hospital privileges?


At ColoWell America, Dr. Shiraz Farooq has privileges at the following hospitals and surgery centers: Memorial Hospital Tampa, Brandon Regional Hospital, Brandon Surgery Center, Fletcher Ambulatory Surgery Center and Tampa Outpatient Surgery Center ( https://tampaoutpatient.com/specialist/shiraz-farooq-m-d/).




Which insurances do you accept?


ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a proctologist near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a gastrointestinal specialist near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a colorectal surgeon near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a hemorrhoid doctor or hemorrhoid treatment near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.





Medical Marijuana Q&A

What are ColoWell America's primary medical facilities and hospital privileges?


At ColoWell America, Dr. Shiraz Farooq has privileges at the following hospitals and surgery centers: Memorial Hospital Tampa, Brandon Regional Hospital, Brandon Surgery Center, Fletcher Ambulatory Surgery Center and Tampa Outpatient Surgery Center ( https://tampaoutpatient.com/specialist/shiraz-farooq-m-d/).




Which insurances do you accept?


ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a proctologist near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a gastrointestinal specialist near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a colorectal surgeon near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.




Where can I find a hemorrhoid doctor or hemorrhoid treatment near me?


Consult your general practitioner or your insurance company for medical specialists in your area. We are located on Armenia Ave., near the Hillsborough Ave. intersection, next to Pin Chasers bowling alley. We are easily accessible from I-275. ColoWell America carries the following insurances, Cigna, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Medicare, Freedom Health, and Optimum HealthCare, Wellcare Health Plans, Sunshine Health, Molina, Humana - more insurance policies are available, please call us for more information (813) 278-6430. We also offer affordable Self-Pay rates.





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