Hemorrhoids and Treatment

What are hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are normal cushions of tissue that are situated around the anal canal. They help with the normal opening and closing of the anal sphincter. Everyone has hemorrhoids. However, when people speak of having hemorrhoid problems, it usually refers to the fact that they have enlarged and can bleeding, prolapse, or become swollen and painful.

Hemorrhoids are divided into either External or Internal Hemorrhoids.

Internal hemorrhoids are found within the anal canal and are normally not seen. When internal hemorrhoids enlarge, they can either bleed or prolapse out. Internal hemorrhoids, as they are internal, normally do not have any nerve endings and therefore do not have any sensation. Most people will have painless, bright red blood when they bleed. If they prolapse, patients may feel a sense of some tissue coming out. If the hemorrhoid is not very large, it will usually reduce, that is, go back inside, on their own. If it is larger, patients may have to use their hand to push it back in.

Normally, treatment of internal hemorrhoids does not require surgery anymore. They are usually quite easy to treat by either injecting them with a medication that causes the hemorrhoid to shrink or shrivel up. Another common way of treating hemorrhoids involved placing a small rubber band across the base of the hemorrhoid. This will then cause the hemorrhoid to fall off over a few days. Surgery is only required for very large hemorrhoids.

External hemorrhoids are found on the outside of the anus. They show up as bulges of tissue that look like grapes or may be flat like the petals of a flower. Normally, external hemorrhoids are not symptomatic and are very common. However, in a small number of patients, they may become swollen and inflamed. This can be extremely painful. External hemorrhoids, as they are covered by skin, are very sensitive and can only be treated with surgery and usually requires a general anesthetic.

If you have hemorrhoids, Pacific Executive Health can arrange for a rapid assessment so that you can be diagnosed and treated quickly.