Researchers have conducted a clinical trial comparing the effectiveness of glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) ointment versus acetate ointment in the treatment of chronic anal fissures.
An anal fissure is a long-lasting painful condition that affects many people worldwide. It results in small tears or cuts in the skin around the anus. They can be caused by passing hard stools, diarrhea, constipation, childbirth, or anal sex. Symptoms include sharp pain and bleeding during bowel movements.
Anal fissures are very common in young infants but can affect people of any age. Most anal fissures get better with simple treatments, such as increased fiber intake or soaking in a warm-water bath. However, some people with anal fissures may need medicine or, occasionally, surgery. Two topical medications are commonly used in anal fissures. These are glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) ointment and acetate ointment.
Glyceryl trinitrate is a medication that helps to relax the muscles around the anus, which can reduce pain and allow the fissure to heal. Tocopherol acetate is a form of vitamin E that is sometimes used to treat skin conditions. However, the effectiveness of acetate ointment in anal fissures is yet to be determined.
In a bid to gather more information, a clinical trial was conducted recently to compare the safety and effectiveness of GTN and acetate ointments in patients with anal fissures.
The clinical study included 160 patients with anal fissures divided into two groups. One group received GTN ointment while the other group was given acetate ointment for the treatment of anal fissures. These patients were followed for 16 weeks to determine the effect of these drugs on anal pain, bleeding, and recurrence of the disease.
At the end of 8 weeks, the pain score declined by 56.2 mm in the GTN group while it decreased by 67.1 mm in the acetate group. 16 weeks after finishing treatment, the recurrence rate was 13.2% in the GTN group compared to 2.9% in the acetate group.
These results indicate that acetate ointment was more effective in reducing anal pain and the risk of return of anal fissures after treatment.
In conclusion, the clinical trial found that acetate ointment was more effective than GTN ointment in the treatment of chronic anal fissures. It also demonstrates that Tocopherol acetate ointment achieved a greater healing rate and a lower recurrence rate 16 weeks after finishing the treatment.
If you are suffering from chronic anal fissures, you may want to talk to your doctor about whether acetate ointment is right for you.