Painful, swollen veins known as hemorrhoids can develop on your anus or inside the anal canal. If you’ve got hemorrhoids, board-certified gastroenterologist Oforbuike Ewelukwa, MD, MSc, of Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC in Katy, Texas, can help. Dr. Ewelukwa and his team use advanced, minimally invasive techniques to resolve problematic hemorrhoids and help prevent them from recurring. Call the office today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.

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What are hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are swollen veins that develop on your anus (external hemorrhoids) or inside the anal canal (internal hemorrhoids). They can often be deeply uncomfortable and even painful, as well as causing itching, bleeding, and burning sensations.

External hemorrhoids may be particularly painful as there are more nerve endings on your anus. Internal hemorrhoids might not be so noticeable at first, but they can start bleeding if you have constipation and pass large, hard stools.

Internal hemorrhoids can also protrude from the anus, which could lead to complications from restricted blood flow. Hemorrhoids sometimes form blood clots that create hard, painful lumps called thrombosed hemorrhoids.

Why would I get hemorrhoids?

Constipation is the most likely cause of your hemorrhoids. If you often strain to pass large, hard, dry stools, the pressure damages your anal veins, and they fill with blood.

Constipation is typically due to insufficient dietary fiber, exercise, and water. Dehydration and slow passage through the bowels causes your stools to dry and harden, making them much more difficult to pass. Other factors that increase your risk of getting hemorrhoids include:

  • Family history of hemorrhoids
  • Overuse of laxatives
  • The aging process
  • Frequent bouts of diarrhea
  • Pregnancy

You should also avoid spending more time on the toilet than necessary because toilet design offers no support to your anal veins.

You can prevent hemorrhoids from forming as a result of constipation by eating a fiber-rich diet, getting plenty of exercise, and drinking lots of water. Should you develop hemorrhoids, avoid straining when they first appear, and they might heal in a week or two. If not, the Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC team offers effective treatments.

What treatments can help with hemorrhoids?

Conservative treatments like suppositories (medicine you insert in your anus), medicated creams, and pads can ease your symptoms. Some patients find a sitz bath containing Epsom salts can soothe hemorrhoids too.

Severe or recurrent hemorrhoids might require further treatments to get rid of the problem veins. The Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC team offers several minimally invasive therapies that treat hemorrhoids most effectively, such as sclerotherapy, rubber band ligation, and laser, infrared, or bipolar coagulation.

If you develop hemorrhoids or have anal pain and bleeding, get a fast diagnosis and expert treatment at Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC. Call the office or book an appointment online today.