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side effects and potential risks of a sphincterotomy a lateral internal sphincterotomy is a simple and widely performed procedure and is highly effective in the treatment of anal fissures. Sphincterotomy, also called a lateral internal sphincterotomy, is a type of procedure that is used to cut the anal sphincter. The anal sphincter is the group of muscles connected to the rectum, at the end of the digestive tract, through which bowel movements are passed. This surgery is done when an anal fissure (a break in the skin of the anus) hasnt gotten better after trying other treatments. anal fissures can be painful, sometimes to the point that they disrupt everyday activities. Your doctor probably first recommended the typical treatment, consisting of a regimen of stool softeners and medicated creams. If this does not alleviate your symptoms and allow the fissure to heal within a couple of weeks, however, you may need to consider a lateral internal sphincterotomy to find. anal tears in the gay community have a different patho-physiology and should be approached and treated completely differently. Complications & side effects of lateral internal sphincterotomies. Why the fuss about performing a lateral internal sphincterotomy or cutting the anal sphincter? The first and most important reason is incontinence. Purpose internal sphincterotomy remains the standard for treatment of anal fissure, but it is associated with risks of infection, bleeding, and incontinence. Recent studies have suggested that the complications after lateral internal sphincterotomy are related to surgical technique. fewer than 1 of patients develop an anal fistula at the site of the sphincterotomy. This usually results from a breach of the mucosa at the time of the sphincterotomy.