Do Hemorrhoids Increase my Risk of Other Conditions?
The presence of hemorrhoids is often unpleasant, and can lead to the common symptoms of pain and discomfort. However, the majority of cases will resolve without the need for treatment, particularly if you have been following the self-help advice that your Los Angeles colorectal surgeon will give. This will usually involve drinking plenty of water, eating a high fiber diet, and increasing your level of physical activity, which will all reduce the pressure being applied to the rectum and anus.
It is possible for hemorrhoids to develop into more serious conditions, with the most common of these being a strangulated hemorrhoid. These occur when an internal hemorrhoid (one that formed inside the rectal canal) protrudes out through the anus. This is often known as a prolapse. If the hemorrhoid is carefully pushed back inside the body (using clean hands and a lubricant if required), then there should be no further complications. However, if this is not the case, and the hemorrhoid remains outside the body, then the strong muscles of the anus will tighten around the base of the swelling. This will cut off the blood supply. You should be able to tell very easily if this has occurred, because of the intense pain that will result. Strangulated hemorrhoids will require treatment, so you should book an appointment with your local proctologist (who may also use the term colorectal surgeon).
It is also possible for a blood clot to form inside the hemorrhoid. A thrombotic hemorrhoid develops when a blood clot forms just underneath the skin, at the site of the hemorrhoid. If there are several blood clots close together, forming a hard, painful lump near the opening of the anus, then this is known as a thrombosed external hemorrhoid. These may require office surgery in order to remove the blood clot and the hemorrhoid. This procedure should prevent any further complications from developing.
Hemorrhoids are not a dangerous condition, and it is highly unlikely that any other health problems will result from the presence of these swollen areas. Unlike the fleshy growths that are known as polyps and found on the lining of the colon, they do not develop into a more serious condition, whereas polyps can eventually turn into colon cancer.
However, while hemorrhoids are unlikely to lead to any long term health problems, it is important that you have them checked out by a colorectal specialist if they have been present for over a week. Usually, if they are going to resolve without intervention, this will have occurred within the first seven days. Persisting for longer than this will usually mean that some form of treatment will be required. Booking a consultation with one of the many colorectal surgeons or proctologists based in Los Angeles or the surrounding areas, such as Beverly Hills or Santa Monica, will allow you to discuss your symptoms and the most appropriate methods of treatment for you. Knowing the benefits and risks of each treatment method will mean that you are able to make informed decisions about how you would like to proceed. You will also be advised about the most important preventative measures, and these will help to protect you against other colorectal conditions, in addition to hemorrhoids.