Haemorrhoids or Piles

What are Haemorrhoids or Piles?

Haemorrhoids or piles are prominent veins of the anus. It is normally a result of long term straining from constipation. Often present with painless bright red bleeding from the back passage. However sometimes, they can be painful especially when there is a clot within (thrombosed) or protruding (prolapsed) and a combination of both (prolapsed and thrombosed).

Four Grades of Haemorrhoids

There are four grades of haemorrhoids. These are Grade 1 to Grade 4. Dependent on the severity, treatment is tailored accordingly.

Often, minor degrees of haemorrhoids (Grade 1 and 2) can be managed with good bowel health. These includes avoiding straining, having plenty of fibre, fluid and exercise. Occasionally a laxative and stool softerner (low dose) may be required. These minor haemorrhoids can also be banded or injected if they are particularly troublesome.

Haemorrhoids of Grade 3 and 4 may require surgery. These more severe ones often describe the degree of prolapse of the haemorrhoidal veins. If they do not settle with good bowel health, then haemorrhoid surgery is required. Subsequent to surgery it is crucial to continue good bowel health in order to avoid this condition in future. Occasionally a low dose longer term laxative is required to achieve the desired effect.

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