Hemorrhoids are swollen, irritated veins around the rectum or anus. In some cases, they clear up on their own relatively quickly. If you aren’t so lucky, hemorrhoids can stick around causing discomfort for a lengthy time.
While it may seem embarrassing to discuss hemorrhoids with your doctor, it’s wise to seek evaluation and guidance from a digestive specialist, especially if you have hemorrhoids that are causing pain and discomfort.
Here at Eastside Bariatric & General Surgery, Dr. Aliu Sanni and his team are invested in your health and want patients to know they shouldn’t feel embarrassed when seeking help for hemorrhoids.
Seeking medical advice for hemorrhoids
There’s no need to suffer in silence hoping that your hemorrhoids will resolve on their own. The truth is, hemorrhoids are very treatable. A visit with a gastroenterologist is the best step toward getting relief.
Some people have hemorrhoids that resolve within days, while others struggle with persistent or recurrent episodes that cause significant stress and discomfort. It’s wise to learn about hemorrhoids and when it’s time to talk to a doctor.
What are hemorrhoids?
When you hear the term hemorrhoids, this refers to the veins around the rectum and anus becoming inflamed. These bulging, twisted veins are similar to varicose veins in the legs, so hemorrhoids are essentially varicose veins of the rectal and anal region.
There are two types of hemorrhoids.
Internal hemorrhoids are found inside the anus and are usually painless. Increased pressure from straining during bowel movements is a common cause of internal hemorrhoids.
While you may not experience physical symptoms, seeing a streak of blood on the toilet paper is a warning sign that you may have internal hemorrhoids. Any appearance of blood when you have a bowel movement should prompt you to schedule a visit with one of our doctors.
External hemorrhoids are most often associated with pain, itching, and discomfort. This type is easier to notice when inspecting the outer part of the anus. It most often feels like a fleshy lump. It is also possible for internal hemorrhoids to grow large and bulge outside of the anus.
Will my hemorrhoids go away on their own?
Without a thorough evaluation, it’s impossible to know whether your hemorrhoids will go away on their own or not. If an underlying issue is contributing to your hemorrhoids, they are likely to persist or recur unless the underlying issue is resolved. Examples of underlying problems are straining during bowel movements, lifting heavy weights, or being overweight.
What’s important is that you seek the guidance of a medical professional. While not life-threatening, left untreated hemorrhoids can cause complications such as anal prolapse, anal fissures, thrombosis, or anemia due to blood loss. Bacterial infections and tissue death (necrosis) are other serious complications from long-standing, untreated hemorrhoids.
Conservative therapy is often the first step in treating your hemorrhoids. When conservative measures fail to provide adequate relief, there are many options our team employs to treat hemorrhoids. You’re in good hands with our team at Eastside Bariatric & General Surgery.
For an evaluation of your hemorrhoids, call our office in Snellville, Georgia, or request an appointment here.