A transanal resection is surgery done through the anal canal to remove tissue.

Rectal Care

Take a sitz bath at least 3-4 times a day and after each bowel movement for the first 2 days and then as needed. A sitz bath is sitting in warm water to soothe your anus. You can use a plastic device that fits on your toilet or sit in the bathtub. This helps with healing and lessens pain and spasms. Sit in the water for at least 10-20 minutes.

For the first few days, clean the anus after a bowel movement by spraying it with warm water. You may want to use baby wipes to gently clean the rectum. The baby wipes should be free of perfume, dyes, and alcohol.

You may have yellowish-red drainage from the anus for 7 -14 days. Sanitary pads in your underwear can prevent soiling. Cotton underwear is best. Use fragrance and dye free soap when washing. The drainage will become less and turn lighter in color over time. You can expect more bloody drainage after a bowel movement, with increased activity, and about 10 days after surgery when the stitches begin to dissolve.


  • Do not lift more than 20 pounds until approved by your doctor.

  • Do not drive while taking opioid pain pills.

  • Sex may be resumed when okayed by your doctor.

  • You may return to work when approved by your doctor.


It is normal to have pressure rather than pain after surgery. You may feel like you need to quickly get to the bathroom. You may have pain with your first bowel movement. This will improve as you heal.


You may be on a low fiber for the first few weeks with stool softeners as needed. This will avoid bulky stool stretching the incision. After 2-3 weeks, you may increase the amount of fiber in your diet. This may include a bulk fiber laxative. Your doctor will talk to you about your diet.

Drink at least 8-10 (8 oz.) glasses of fluid a day. Fluids with caffeine do not count.

When to Call

  • No bowel movement after 1-2 days.

  • Unable to control bowel movements.

  • Large amounts of bright red blood from the rectum that does not stop with applied pressure.

  • Fever over 100.4 F.

  • Foul-smelling drainage from anus.

  • Excess swelling in or around anus.

  • Pain not controlled by pain pills.

  • Problems passing urine.

Who to Call

Digestive Health Center
(608) 242-2800 or 1(855) 342-9900

After hours, weekends or holidays this number will be answered by the paging operator. Ask for the doctor on call. Leave your name and phone number with area code. The doctor will call you back.