What is a Hemorrhoid?

Surgery for Piles

Hemorrhoids also known as piles are swollen veins in an individual’s anus and lower rectum.

Hemorrhoids in the lower rectum are called internal hemorrhoids.

Hemorrhoids which develop under the skin of the anus are called external hemorrhoids.

What are the symptoms of


Symptoms of the hemorrhoids vary according to the type of hemorrhoids.

The symptoms of external hemorrhoids are as follows:

These symptoms occur under the skin around the anal region

  • Irritation and itching in the anal area
  • Pain and uneasiness leading to discomfort
  • Swelling around the anus region
  • Bleeding

The symptoms of internal hemorrhoids are as follows:

  • Bleeding that is painless during the bowel movements; the patient might notice blood in the toilet.
  • Hemorrhoids that are prolapsed or protruding result in pain, bleeding and irritation.

Thrombosed hemorrhoids i.e. if the blood pools in an external hemorrhoid and forms clots then it can result in the following symptoms:

  • Severe pain and swelling
  • Inflammation
  • Hard lumps on the anus

What causes


Following are the causes of hemorrhoids:

  • Pregnancy
  • Consuming low fiber diet for a long time
  • Lifting heavy weights regularly
  • Having anal intercourse
  • Chronic diarrhea and constipation
  • Obesity
  • Strenuous bowel movements
  • Spending a lot of time sitting in the toilet 

What are the remedies available for


Surgery is required in very few cases and mild pain and swelling can be relieved with some home remedies like eating high fiber food which make the bowel movement easier by softening the stools and increasing the bulk of the stools passed.

Pain killers can also provide relief.

Application of creams with hydrocortisone helps and using pads with witch hazel or any other numbing agent helps.

Soaking the anal area in warm water for 10 to 15mins every day for 2 to 3 three times will provide relief.

Doctors might suggest creams, ointments and pads containing ingredients such as witch hazel, or hydrocortisone and lidocaine. Along with the above mentioned remedies.

What are the various surgical procedures available if the following

remedies fail?

Different types of surgical procedures are as follows:

  • External hemorrhoid thrombectomy: This procedure is carried out under the influence of anesthesia.

The need for this procedure arises when thrombosis has developed within the external hemorrhoid. During the procedure the clot is removed. The procedure is very prudent and has a high success rate if it is carried out within 72 hours of formation of the clot.

  • Minimally invasive procedures: the doctor might recommend minimally invasive procedures if the hemorrhoids are painful and these procedures don’t require any anesthetic.

Rubber band ligation: this is one of the types of minimally invasive procedures. In this procedure the surgeon places two tiny rubber bands around the base of the hemorrhoid; the rubber bands cut off the circulation to the hemorrhoid and as a result the hemorrhoid withers off within a week or so.

This procedure causes some amount of discomfort and may also cause some bleeding 2 to 4 days after the procedure.

Sclerotherapy: In this procedure the doctor injects chemical solution that shrinks the hemorrhoid tissue providing some relief to the patient.

Infrared, laser and bipolar treatment: Infrared, laser and bipolar treatments are coagulation techniques that make the hemorrhoids harden and shrivel. This procedure causes no discomfort.

  • Surgical procedures: only a small group of patients need to undergo surgical procedure, the doctor might recommend any of the following procedure if the need arises:

Hemorrhoidectomy: This surgery is conducted under the influence of local, general or spinal anesthesia combined with sedation. This is one of the comprehensive surgeries in treating hemorrhoids. Once the patient is asleep the hemorrhoids are removed surgically with very less bleeding.

Hemorrhoid stapling surgery:  carried out under the influence of anesthesia this surgery stops/blocks the blood flow to the hemorrhoid tissue. This procedure is also called stapled hemorrhoidopexy.  This procedure involves stapling of the bowel resulting in stopping of blood flow and gradual shrinking of the hemorrhoid.

What is the post-operative

care to be taken?

Post operation the doctor might recommend mildly spicy or bland food.

Patient is advised to eat high fiber food

Avoid heavy lifting and jarring activities

Patients are prescribed pain killers because the first 72 hours after the surgery they will experience pain.

They are also prescribed vitamin supplements.

How is the road to recovery and

what to expect after surgery?

Since it’s an open procedure it’s going to take a longer time for the patient to make full recovery, when compared to a minimally invasive (Laparoscopic) procedure.

After the surgery temperature, pulse, respiration, blood pressure and wound site are carefully monitored by the doctor to avoid any post-surgery complications.

Till the patient is in the hospital the patient will be given daily wound care and after his/her discharge they will be advised on wound care at home.

If the appendix had already perforated and was operated upon for this reason you might have to stay in the hospital for a day to be monitored for any other complications.

One might feel nauseated post-surgery, this might be due to anesthesia administered for the purpose of the surgery.

The patient will be required to visit the doctor 1 to 4 weeks from operation depending upon the condition of the patient.

The doctor might prescribe a small amount of narcotic pain medicine to relieve pain.

If the pain in the incisional area persists the doctor will advise bed rest for a week.

Post-surgery medication is given to you post discharge.

When to call a doctor if complications occur


If one feels nauseated, develops fever, bleeding occurs through the incisions, inability to urinate etc; under these circumstances it is better to get in touch with the doctor who performed the operation.

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