What is Piles? How can it be treated?

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What is Piles

Piles, also known as hemorrhoids, are swollen and inflamed blood vessels in and around the anus and rectum. They can be internal, occurring inside the rectum, or external, forming under the skin around the anus. Piles can be caused by various factors, including straining during bowel movements, chronic constipation or diarrhea, prolonged sitting, obesity, and pregnancy.

Symptoms of Piles:

  • Pain or discomfort during bowel movements
  • Itching or irritation around the anus
  • Swelling or lumps near the anus
  • Bright red blood during bowel movements
  • A feeling of incomplete bowel movement

Treatment of Piles:

The treatment of piles depends on the severity of the condition. In mild cases, lifestyle and dietary changes may be sufficient to alleviate symptoms. However, in more severe cases, medical intervention or procedures may be required. Here are some common methods of treating piles:

  • Lifestyle and Dietary Changes: Eating a high-fiber diet: Consuming foods rich in fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, can soften stools and make them easier to pass, reducing strain during bowel movements.
  • Drinking plenty of water: Staying hydrated helps maintain soft stools and prevents constipation.
  • Avoiding straining: Straining during bowel movements can worsen piles, so it’s important to take your time and avoid excessive pushing.
  • Regular exercise: Being physically active can help improve bowel movements and reduce the risk of piles.
  • Topical Treatments: Over-the-counter creams, ointments, or suppositories containing ingredients like hydrocortisone or witch hazel can help reduce itching, inflammation, and discomfort associated with piles.
  • Oral Medications: Pain relievers or anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed to manage pain and inflammation caused by piles. Stool softeners may also be recommended to ease bowel movements.
  • Baths: Sitting in warm water for about 10-15 minutes several times a day can provide relief from pain and itching associated with piles.
  • Rubber Band Ligation: For internal piles that do not respond to conservative treatments, rubber band ligation may be performed by a Gastroenterologist. It involves placing a rubber band around the base of the hemorrhoid to cut off its blood supply, causing it to shrink and fall off within a few days.
  • Sclerotherapy: In this procedure, a chemical solution is injected into the swollen blood vessels, causing them to shrink and gradually disappear.
  • Hemorrhoidectomy: For severe cases of piles, a surgical procedure called hemorrhoidectomy may be performed to remove the hemorrhoids. This is usually reserved for cases that don’t respond to other treatments.

It’s essential to consult a Best Gastroenterologist in Islamabad for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan. Additionally, adopting a healthy lifestyle, including a high-fiber diet and regular exercise, can help prevent the development or recurrence of piles.

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