Hemorrhoids are relatively common and very painful, but a hemorrhoidectomy can provide relief when other treatments are ineffective.
Hemorrhoids are caused when the veins located in the mucous membranes around the anus and rectum become distended or swollen. Oftentimes, they are a result of increased pressure in the area due to being overweight or pregnant, or straining during bowel movements.
While hemorrhoids are not often dangerous, they can be quite frustrating to deal with on a recurrent basis.
For patients who have mild swelling, pain, and inflammation of hemorrhoids, home treatments are often the first course of action. Some treatment options to consider include eating high-fiber foods to help with bowel movements, keeping area clean, and not using dry toilet paper products. Some patients experience relief by taking regular sitz baths. This involves soaking the area in a tub of plain warm water for around 15 minutes a few times a day until your hemorrhoids heal. If the pain is bothersome, over-the-counter oral pain relievers can be used.
Minimally Invasive Treatments
When home treatments don’t help, your doctor may suggest a variety of minimally invasive procedures as the next course of action. Most can be completed in a single outpatient visit to the doctor’s office.
• Sclerotherapy: This procedure involves injecting a chemical solution directly into affected areas. This chemical will help to shrink the hemorrhoid tissues and stop them from further swelling, pain, and inflammation.
• Rubber Band Litigation: During the treatment procedure, the doctor will place a couple of small rubber bands around the base of internal hemorrhoids. This is done to cut off the circulation. Within a week, banded hemorrhoids will wither and fall off.
• Coagulation: Coagulation techniques use lasers, heat, or infrared lights to remove hemorrhoids. The procedure will cause a small amount of bleeding to the internal hemorrhoids and result in them hardening and shriveling up.
In some cases, your hemorrhoids will need to be surgically treated. Depending on the severity of your problem, your doctor may suggest an outpatient visit or an overnight stay at the hospital.
A hemorrhoidectomy involves a surgeon removing the excess tissues which are causing the bleeding. This can be done using a variety of techniques. Generally, it is completed using local anesthetics with a general anesthetic, spinal anesthetic, or sedation. This is the most complete and effective means of treating recurring or severe hemorrhoids.
While the procedure is a relatively safe one, there are always some possible risks and side effects of any surgery. Complications can include pain and temporary problems emptying your bladder, which can lead to urinary tract infections. The pain can be treated using oral pain medications and by soaking in a warm sitz bath.