Hemorrhoids or piles are bowel conditions characterized by lumps seen on underneath the skin surrounding the anus. They may be associated with pain, bleeding and itching. Some external hemorrhoids may be pushed back to relieve itching, pain and discomfort. However, some of these hemorrhoids stay for good unless remedied. This condition is most often under-treated. Since it doesn’t present much of a bother during the early periods, they come unattended. However, when symptoms persist and become severely uncomfortable, seeking medical consult is needed.
When is the right time to seek medical help?
Discomfort is subjective. If you think that you are becoming disabled and dysfunctional because of hemorrhoids, then, it’s about time to seek medical consult. However, discomfort may come later than the symptoms. If you are suffering from any of the following conditions, prompt medical treatments need to be sought.
- Bleeding every bowel movement occurs.
- Bleeding is accompanied by light-headedness, weakness and pallor. These conditions may signify increase on blood loss.
- Bleeding occurs while you are taking prescribed anti-coagulants. Anti-coagulants are designed to prevent coagulation. When a patient is taking in anticoagulants, he or she is prone to bleed. If you are suffering from hemorrhoidal bleeding, taking anti-coagulants may further increase blood loss.
- Hemorrhoids which couldn’t be pushed back need a medical consult. At this point, obstruction may ensue.
- If severe and significant pain is present.
The Medical Options
- For prolapsed hemorrhoids, they may be pushed back into the anus by a health care provider through constant pressure. This relieves discomfort and pain. Though it may be helpful, this is usually temporary. Prolapses may recur if there is constant pressure on straining during bowel movements or during pregnancy.
- For thrombosed hemorrhoids which are quite impossible to push back, a small incision is made to remove the clot within the hemorrhoid.
- Surgery becomes a viable option when hemorrhoids become difficult to deal with.
- The Surgical Options
- Sclerotherapy. This is a form of treatment associated with injection of a compound which induces the hemorrhoid to scar.
- Laser therapy. This procedure uses laser beams to scar external hemorrhoids and/or harden the internal hemorrhoids.
- Rubber band ligation. This is a sterile procedure which is done within the physician’s office. The surgeon ties tight rubber bands around the hemorrhoidal veins. This intentionally cuts off the blood supply of the hemorrhoids causing them to fall off.
- Hemorrhoidectomy. This is an invasive procedure associated with incisions to totally remove the hemorrhoids. It’s an aggressive approach with a minimum recurrence rate. However, there is an increase in complication rates.
- Stapled Hemorrhoidectomy. This is a new surgical approach used to treat third-degree hemorrhoids. It makes use of staples to keep the prolapse from moving downward. It is a 30-minute procedure associated with fewer risks and complications.
Diets play an important role in preventing and alleviating the discomfort associated with hemorrhoids. Fiber-rich meals may just be your ticket to a hemorrhoid-free life. Though these treatments provide options, avoiding the main problem – hemorrhoids, is till the wisest move.