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What is the cause of a white plaque in the anal canal?

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Gastroenterologist, Surgical
Practicing since : 1986
Answered : 38 Questions
I am a 61 year old male. I had a colonoscopy last Tuesday. My gastroenterologist made the following note: "Irregular anal canal with white material-atypical on one wall". This material is XXXXXXX and entirely within the anal canal. I saw the material on the monitor and it is quite extensive. He said he didn't know what it was and referred me to a surgeon. The surgeon wants to do a biopsy under general anesthesia. What could this white material be? Could it be harmful? Should I have the surgical biopsy or just ignore it? On the Internet, I have seen references to Leukoplakia, which some say is pre-cancerous and some say is benign.
Mon, 23 Apr 2012 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Radhakrishna Patta 1 hour later

Thanks for your query.

A thick white plaque in the anal canal is not normal. It could very well be leukoplakia. A biopsy is mandatory. If the biopsy is inconclusive a repeat biopsy will be necessary. A candidal infection is another possibility. First go ahead with the biopsy at the earliest.

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