Haemorrhoids are often described as “varicose veins” of the anal canal. They consist of various swollen blood vessels covered by lining of the anal canal. As the haemorrhoids enlarge they may prolapse outside the anal canal. Anal tags may be associated with haemorrhoids, these often form after an external haemorrhoid heals over. A thrombosed external haemorrhoroid is a blood clot that occurs, and causes severe pain. It usually settles down after 4-6 weeks.
There are many contributing factoers to the development of haemorrhoids, including excessive straining and constipation, ageing, pregnancy and childbirth, long periods on the toilet.
Symptoms include pain, bleeding, itch and lumps.
Investigations are often carried out to rule out other causes of bleeding in the colon and rectum, so a flexible sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy may be organised.
Treatment includes injection or rubber band ligation, which are simple, less painless options, or haemorrhoidectomy, for haemorrhoids which are larger.
Post operative instructions following haemorrhoidectomy