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General

Hemorrhoids consist of small sized arteries and veins, from many
arteriovenous anastomoses, creating pillow-like clusters of veins that lie just beneath the mucous membranes lining the lowest part of the rectum and the anus. These clusters are placed in the lower part of the colon and the anus, creating two types of hemorrhoids, internal and external. Hemorrhoids are parts of the normal human anatomy, therefore they are not an ailment.

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Symptoms

  • Anus irritation and swelling
  • Burning sensation, light or intense anus pain
  • Mucous secretions
  • Hemorrhoids prolapsed
  • Anemia, if bleeding is serious or frequent

Causes

When hemorrhoids create discomfort to a patient, this is called a “Haemorrhoidal disease”. The cause of this disease is unknown, yet the factors which increase the risk are:

  • Chronic constipation
  • Pregnancy/ Labor
  • Intra-abdominal pressure cause by heavy types of work
  • Hereditary predisposition
  • Obesity or low exercise life
  • Prolonged standing
  • Low-fiber diet

Severity

Hemorrhoids are classified into four grades based on the degree of prolapse.

  • Grade I: No prolapse, just prominent blood vessels
  • Grade II: Prolapse upon bearing down, but spontaneous reduction
  • Grade III: Prolapse upon bearing down requiring manual reduction
  • Grade IV: Prolapse with inability to be manually reduced.

Pregnancy

Hemorrhoids appear frequently during pregnancy as a result of hormonal changes, constipation and increased intra-abdominal pressure.

According to clinical studies, 25%-35% of women suffer from hemorrhoids during their pregnancy, while 85% of these women begin suffering in their third month of pregnancy. In most women, the symptoms disappear after giving birth.

Until giving birth, it is recommended a conservative treatment consisted of high-fiber diet and liquids, lukewarm baths and use of special ointments. A gynecologist’s or a physician specialist’s advice is always necessary though.

Colon Cancer

All patients suffering from blood loss from the rectum must consult a gastroenterologist immediately as it may be a symptom of colon cancer rather than Haemorrhoidal disease. People at higher risk are males or females aged above 50 years old, who have a family history of colon cancer.