If you have hemorrhoids, you know pain, bleeding, swelling, and itchiness all too well. If you’ve tried over-the-counter or even prescription ointments or suppositories to relieve symptoms only to find limited results, you may want to ask your GI doctor about hemorrhoid ligation. Eight out of ten hemorrhoid ligation patients experience permanent relief for these swollen veins.
Let’s learn more about hemorrhoid ligation and where you can go to receive one in California.
What Does Hemorrhoid Ligation Involve
Hemorrhoid ligation may be performed in the office of a gastroenterologist or the hospital, depending on your specific health needs. Either way, the procedure bands internal hemorrhoids, i.e., those lying within the walls of the anus and rectum by a lighted anoscope.
Because of the tightness of these bands or ligatures, the hemorrhoids quickly shrink and then fall off within a few days. There is no cutting, sutures, cautery, scalpel, or any of the usual operative devices. The lack of blood supply to the hemorrhoidal tissues simply causes them to shrink, die, and slough off. Hemorrhoid ligation is a relatively quick outpatient procedure, and though patients do experience some degree of pain and extra flatulence, full recovery takes just a few days.
Will My Hemorrhoids Return After Ligation
This is a question many patients ask about hemorrhoid ligation. Unfortunately, the answer is yes; hemorrhoids can return after ligation, but typically not in the very same location. Research shows that if the doctor needs to use four or more ligatures during a procedure, the return rate is higher. It is not the size but rather the number of hemorrhoids that can reduce the success rates of these common GI procedures.
What Will Help Me Prevent Hemorrhoids
To prevent hemorrhoids from happening in the first place or prevent a recurrence, your GI doctor recommends:
- Good hydration–six to eight glasses of water daily
- A high-fiber diet, including daily use of an over-the-counter psyllium fiber supplement (20 to 30 grams of fiber daily is the usual recommendation)
- Moving your bowels as soon as you feel the need to go
- Avoiding sitting on the toilet for long periods of time
- Sitz baths and over-the-counter hemorrhoidal creams or ointments to reduce swelling if and when symptoms of hemorrhoids develop
- Avoiding standing in one place for long periods of time
- Avoiding heavy lifting, overly strenuous gym workouts, and straining at stool
- Getting light aerobic exercise and keeping a healthy body weight
inSite Digestive Health Care, now Genesis Healthcare Partners, an affiilate of Unio Health Partners, is California’s Premier GI Practice
If you cannot manage your hemorrhoid symptoms at home, it may be time for hemorrhoid ligation with one of the highly skilled providers at the inSite Digestive Health Care. Our providers are board-certified, fellowship-trained gastroenterologists with vast experience in all aspects of digestive health.
We look forward to helping you feel your best.