External Hemorrhoid Symptoms occur when the hemorrhoidal veins in the rectum breach the wall of the anus to distend outside of the anal canal. Any hemorrhoid that extends beyond the anus is considered to be external, with the exception of what is called a prolapsed hemorrhoid, which occurs initially inside of the anus but as it worsens eventually protrudes beyond what is called the distal of the anal canal.
External Hemorrhoid Symptoms are caused by a variety of factors. Obesity can result in undo pressure being imposed on the veins of the rectum, as can poor posture or muscle tone, all of which may contribute to the development of hemorrhoids; pregnancy can be responsible for over-straining during bowel movements, in addition to generating pressure in the pelvic region and rectum, which are recognized factors that contribute to hemorrhoidal flare-ups; water retention experienced by women who are menstruating, in addition to prolonged bouts of diarrhea are also known to be causal agents in the development of hemorrhoids; and cigarette smoking during bowel movements, which has been associated with agitating a preexisting condition of hemorrhoids, as well as causing bleeding in the veins of the anus where hemorrhoids already occur. The single most common cause of hemorrhoids is the increased straining that occurs as a result of constipation, which simultaneously is the one contributing factor that is most easily remedied.
External Hemorrhoids Symptoms differ from the symptoms that occur as a result of internal hemorrhoids. External hemorrhoids can either cause tremendous pain and discomfort, or be painless, but almost invariably are distinguished by swelling, irritation, and itching around the inflamed site. Other symptoms of external hemorrhoids may include lumps of tissue around the anus that are frequently spongy in texture, stool that shows traces of blood, residual blood on toilet paper, and an inability to finish a bowel movement. This last external hemorrhoid symptom occurs because of the nerves in the anus, of which there are two, respectively called visceral nerves and somatic nerves. Visceral nerves are found above what is referred to as the dentate line, or nerve line, while somatic nerves occur below the dentate line. Somatic nerves induce pain if they are agitated, unlike visceral nerves, which rather than cause pain produce a sensation of pressure, which is experienced as either the need to make a bowel movement, or a feeling of fullness, even after a bowel movement has been concluded.
External Hemorrhoids are also prone to rupturing, or becoming thrombosed, which is the result of the hemorrhoid developing a breach or developing a blood clot. Because a thrombosed hemorrhoid is composed mostly of somatic nerves, it will often cause the sufferer severe pain, in addition to leaving possible scarring as it heals. As a result, medical attention is often required to remedy a severe case of external hemorrhoids in which thrombosis is present.
External Hemorrhoids that have progressed passed a certain point are typically treated with surgery, although as a first choice of hemorrhoid treatment natural remedies are sometimes recommended. You can find many of these herbal hemorrhoid treatment products today being sold on the internet. External Hemorrhoid’s that require surgical interventions should be preceded by a thorough evaluation from one’s physician, during which time a complete physical will be conducted to ensure that external hemorrhoids are indeed present, and that one is in the proper physical condition necessary to undergo the treatment procedure. Because of the inherent risks of surgical procedures, as well as the extended recovery times associated with invasive procedures, surgery is usually employed as a last effort. There are several kinds of surgical procedures that are performed to treat external hemorrhoids, depending on their severity and how far they have progressed. The following is a shortlist of some of the most commonly performed external hemorrhoid treatment procedures:
Doppler Guided Hemorrhoidal Artery Ligation, which is said to be the only evidence-based procedure for hemorrhoids of any grade, severity or type, and does not require tissue removal; it is frequently used for treating hemorrhoids that exhibit bleeding as their primary symptom; the Stapled Hemorroidectomy, which is also used for prolapsed hemorrhoid treatment and works by reconnecting the externalized hemorrhoidal tissue to the dentate line and thus retards the hemorrhoid’s blood supply.The Stapled Hemorroidectomy is typically not as painful as a surgery in which the hemorrhoid is completely excised, or removed, and generally demands a shorter recovery period; and the Hemorroidectomy, which is a classic surgical procedure with all of the attendant risks that are associated with surgery. It has been linked with conditions of incontinence at later stages of life, and often causes severe pain during recovery, for which reason it is only employed as a last effort for very severe cases.
External Hemorrhoids that are still in their early stages may respond to less invasive, natural remedies. Consulting with one’s physician is paramount to making an informed decision as to which treatment is correct. In the event one’s condition has not progressed too far these natural remedies can be explored as alternative options .They include changing one’s bowel habits and modifying one’s diet to ensure that proper amounts of fiber are being ingested. High-fiber foods include grains, fruits, and vegetables, in addition to bulk-fiber supplements such as psyllium husk. Additionally, because smoking and consuming alcohol are associated with an increased risk of developing hemorrhoids, it is often suggested that one modify or eliminate entirely their intake of such items. The use of creams and ointments that have ingredients that will soothe irritation can be used to acquire relief, in addition to applying ice-packs directly onto the infected site, which can soothe the hemorrhoid and promote temporary relief by shrinking the tissue and reducing pain and irritation.
As with most natural remedies, prevention is the primary objective, and as such should be considered with this in mind. Preventing external hemorrhoids from developing necessitates making lifestyle changes that take into account, not only dietary considerations, but exercise, fitness, and posture as well, in addition to eliminating the use of laxatives, restricting the amount of time spent producing bowel movements, and also trying to reduce straining while making bowel movements. All of the following changes, although sweeping in scope, are the best course of action and the most rigorous remedies available to assist one to successfully prevent, deal with, and resolve their issues with External hemorrhoids.
Written by, David Gilbert
© 2010 H.I.C. Digestive Health – Hemorrhoid Information Center