What exactly is a skin tag?

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map lady
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Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 154
   Posted 5/16/2008 8:02 AM (GMT -7)   
I either keep seeing the same vague answer, verbatim, on many different websites, or an original but vaguely worded explanation that still leaves me confused.
So....what is a skin tag, as it relates to crohn's, and what does it do?  How does it develop?  I get the fact that they are painful, but there's so many things that can make our butt hurt it's not much help to only know that tongue

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 5/16/2008 8:13 AM (GMT -7)   

Here's a link with pics of hemmies (first set of pics) and anal skin tags (pics below hemmies) with a breif description, basically they are diseased tissue which is why they don't heal properly (if at all) when removed surgically.



Mine hurt, some people don't notice pain, but I have many and they're large and usually are quite hard (painful) on occassion, very rarely, they're softer but still large.



My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2739
   Posted 5/16/2008 8:27 AM (GMT -7)   
It's basically a growth around the anus, yes, very much caused by Crohn's. I have a few myself. Mine don't usually hurt, if I've had a lot of D they can though. Mine haven't grown very big either, but can get inflammed during a flare. But I know they can be much worse for others.
Diagnosed with Crohn's Disease 2/06 after sever GI bleed. Has been suffering since 1998. History of rectal fistula and gallbladder removal. Currently taking Predisone 40mg, and Asacol.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 733
   Posted 5/16/2008 8:29 AM (GMT -7)   

Hopefully that link works and doesn't violate any rules. It is posted purely for the excellent pictures in differentiating skin tags from hemmies, etc.

I have skin tags in my groin area, and a couple around scar tissue close to my anus. I had them verified by my doctor, and then I removed the ones I could see myself with a sterilized pair of nail clippers and some antibiotic ointment. I'm sure this isn't the doctor recommended route, but it seems to work fine and it is in my budget. The only tricky part is that I can't see all of the stupid little skin tags well enough to clip them, so some of them are allowed to live. There's just a minor pinch of pain involved, and they only bleed for about 10 minutes. I do NOT, obviously, do this with anything other than verified skin tags.

Hope this helps.
26f, dx'd CD July '05 after 6 fistula/abscess surgeries
Remicade only, every 16 weeks.
Digestive enzymes, and probiotics.
Doing pretty darn good, all things considered. :-)

"Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate, but that we are powerful beyond measure."

~Marianne Williamson

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 28
   Posted 6/5/2008 1:01 AM (GMT -7)   
I have one and it does not hurt. However, my OBGYN offered to remove it when I delivered my baby, which I thought was interesting. My gastro said this wasn't necessary, but I can imagine if it hurt this might be a good idea.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 3143
   Posted 6/5/2008 5:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Well you already got the pics. My statement was going t be "skin tags are the biggest pain in the butt" and that is the only way I describe mine. I have a growing family of them....it started with one large when when I was first diagnosed many years ago. Now it has a family of smaller ones around it. I wouldn't say the tag is painful, but the point where it is "attached" (wrong word but couldn't come up with a better one) is very sensitive. I tend to fissure at the base of the tags.

I am not trying to start a battle but I have to say I would NOT cut them off either yourself or by a doc. pb4 can make the case the strongest, but I can say they will not heal well if at all. They do not heal like a hemmie would. The best care of my tags has been keeping clean, being gentle when wiping and take my anti inflammatory like I am supposed to.
Dx'd '90 (emergency rupture), symptoms ignored long before that, '03 fistulas and bad flagyl reactions, B12 weekly, Pentasa [until I surrender to the bigger meds]
I'm riding on the escalator of life....

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 6518
   Posted 6/5/2008 6:56 AM (GMT -7)   
Geeeez, I thought I had one with ,,Sale, $9.95 0n it, but I was wrong, really it says,,,do not remove under penalty of law, or hand wash only,,,I'm not sure. Very hard to see with a mirror and flashlight, plus i am not that limber. I dont show the doc. If he sees anything while doing a scope , wellllll, he hasn't said anything. Not going to say, "hey doc , would you look at my @&& ? " I did have a boss that had his head up his butt all the time. Bet he could see his just fine.
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 6/5/2008 8:41 AM (GMT -7)   
Don't get them cut off, ever (unless they are completely shrunk up, never during a flare when they're large) and don't get them banded (tied off) which is what happend to me, they were banded during a flare (large and quite painful) and they've never shrunk back down since, remaining in a flare...mine were mistaken for hemhoroides.

My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 456
   Posted 6/5/2008 9:37 AM (GMT -7)   

I had hemorrhoid surgery before I was diagnosed with Crohn's.  (In fact, that's what lead to the diagnosis.)  I had skin tags at the time, and I was told by the surgeon that they were anal warts.  He removed them when he did the surgery, and less than a week later they were back.  It's been over a year now, and I still don't think I'm 100% healed from the surgery.  My tush gets very sore and red occasionally- sometimes from "overuse" and sometimes for no reason I can figure- and when that happens it's not unusual for me to bleed a little bit where the incisions were made. 

Mine look and feel like a flap of tissue growing out of my anus.  Between the skin tags and the consistency of my stools, it's very hard to wipe properly and get clean, which makes things more uncomfortable.  For me, the complications of the tags are more uncomfortable than the tags themselves.  Mine are really just flaps of sensitive tissue in an unfortunate place.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 393
   Posted 6/5/2008 9:52 AM (GMT -7)   
yeah I got one after I had the bad case of thrombosed hemmes back in Jan.....DONT GET THEM CUT ON if you have Crohns, thats what Ive heard let them shrink into a skin tag---thats exactly what I did and now I just hope they never come back cuz it hurt like a son of a BLEEP!!!

Anyone can give up, it's the easiest thing in the world to do. But to hold it together when everyone else would understand if you fell apart, that's true strength

Diagnosed with severe Crohn's colitis in May 2005--spread to ileum and small intestine as of April 2008. Have taken Imuran, Remicade, TPN, Colozal, Entocort, Flagyl, PamineForte, Cipro, Dicyclomine, Prednisone, Asacol, Prevacid, and the list goes on. Currently on Remicade every 8wks, 40mg Pred, Pentasa.

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