Causes, Treatment and Prevention of Hemorrhoids - Houston Colon – Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery

Causes, Treatment and Prevention of Hemorrhoids

June 27, 2011

What causes hemorrhoids?

It is not known for sure what causes hemorrhoids, though low fiber diet, prolonged sitting on the toilet and constipation are thought to be factors. Pregnancy is known to cause them though how it is not known. Pelvic tumors are also known to cause hemorrhoids to enlarge. It is also thought that passing particularly large and/or sharp stool can also add to the enlargement of hemorrhoids.

What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids

When diagnosing hemorrhoids, Houston colorectal surgeons look for the following symptoms in their patients:

  • Pain in the anal area
  • Excessive pressure in the anal area
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Blood in the stool
  • Anal itchiness
  • Prolapsed hemorrhoid into the anal canal or further
  • Diarrhea can aggravate hemorrhoids

How do I treat my hemorrhoids

The first step of hemorrhoid treatment in Houston is changing the diet to have high fiber. A diet high in fiber is known to soften the stool. Fiber is in fruit, vegetables, grains and cereals. An intake of 20-30 grams is needed to reach the desired result.

Over-the-counter medications can be useful in the treatment for hemorrhoids. There are several different kinds. They come in ointments, suppositories, pads, gels, creams and foams. If you need to apply any of these to the anal canal, you can use your finger or a pile pipe. Be sure to lubricate your finger or pile pipe before inserting it. The pile pipe needs to have holes in it.

Colorectal surgeons Houston may prescribe medications to help relieve the symptoms of hemorrhoids.

Protectants that put a barrier on the skin that prevents contact between the irritated area and stool are used in treatment, such as aluminum hydroxide gel, cocoa butter, glycerin, kaolin, lanolin, mineral oil, calamine, and cod liver oil.

In the treatment of hemorrhoids, rectal doctors may also use astringents which promote the drying of the skin, antiseptics which stop bacteria growth, and keratolytics allow medication to better penetrate the area better. Corticosteroids are also used to reduce swelling and itching but cannot be used on an ongoing basis because of the risk of permanent damage to the skin.

Hemorrhoids are one of the most common ailments known to man.  At least 50% of all people will have developed hemorrhoids by the time they are fifty.  However, embarrassment, apprehensions about surgery, and fear of rectal cancer are some of the reasons sufferers do not seek medical attention.  This is unfortunate, as most hemorrhoids are treated non-surgically.  In cases where hemorrhoidectomy may be required, modern procedures are minimally invasive and involve no stitches, and therefore far less painful.

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, chances are that you may have hemorrhoids.  End the suffering.  Visit a colorectal surgeon in Houston and discuss ways to reduce or even eliminate your hemorrhoids.


The Houston colorectal surgeons at Colorectal Surgical Associates provide nonsurgical treatment for the majority of their hemorrhoid patients.  They are also experts in treatment of other rectal disorders, such as fissures, fistulas, and colorectal cancer.