Hemorrhoids, also known as piles, are inflamed veins in the anus and lower rectum. Hemorrhoids may be found under the skin surrounding the anus (external hemorrhoids) or inside the rectum (internal hemorrhoids).
Hemorrhoids can be the result of factors such as:
Hemorrhoids are a common condition that affect an estimated 10.4 million Americans each year, with fifty percent of those having a case of hemorrhoids before the age of fifty.
Symptoms of hemorrhoids may include:
Symptoms of hemorrhoids depend on the location. Internal hemorrhoids lie within the rectum and are usually non-symptomatic. However, when straining to pass a stool, the surface of an internal hemorrhoid tears, causing bleeding. Straining may also cause an internal hemorrhoid to prolapse or push through the anus.
External hemorrhoids may itch, bleed or form a clot (thrombus), resulting in severe swelling, inflammation and pain.
While your physician may be able to see external hemorrhoids just by looking, internal hemorrhoids may be diagnosed using procedures such as:
For hemorrhoids that only cause mild discomfort, your physician may recommend over-the-counter creams, ointments, pads or suppositories. These medications may aid in the relief of the pain and itching associated with hemorrhoids.
For reoccurring or persistent hemorrhoids, a minimally invasive procedure to treat hemorrhoids may be recommended. These procedures can be done in an outpatient setting or in your physician’s office and include:
When all other treatment modalities have failed or if the hemorrhoids are too large, your physician may suggest surgical treatment options. Surgical procedures include hemorrhoid removal (hemorrhoidectomy) or hemorrhoid stapling (stapled hemorrhoidectomy or stapled hemorrhoidopexy), a procedure which blocks blood flow to the hemorrhoidal tissue.
To learn more about hemorrhoids and their treatment or to schedule an appointment, contact us or fill out our form today.