Strangulated Hemorrhoids : Complications

Individuals suffering from hemorrhoids will often complain of their condition not only being a painful one, but also a very embarrassing one as well.  People will want to know of methods that will help them not only heal hemorrhoids, but heal them in a rapid manner.

What are Hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are masses of dilated veins occurring in the anal canal or around the margin of the anal opening.

Hemorrhoid Symptoms and Causes

People suffering from hemorrhoids will describe an itching or burning sensation after bowel movements.  Some may even complain about pain while passing stools, especially in cases where the hemorrhoids have grown big in size.  In more serious cases, sufferers may notice blood in stools, or on the toilet paper used for wiping after passing stools.

The main cause for hemorrhoids to get formed is straining to evacuate stools, which is an action that needs to be carried out when a person gets constipated.  People approaching their old age are also likely to suffer from this condition.  Obese and pregnant individuals are more prone to developing hemorrhoids, probably from the increase in intra-abdominal pressure noted in them.

The other causes are – standing or sitting for long hours and lifting heavy objects often.

Types of Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are of two varieties – a) internal, and b) external.  Blood vessels are found both inside the anal canal as well as outside the anus.  Hence, when the vessels located inside the anal passage becomes swollen, it is called internal hemorrhoids; and when the vessels situated on the outer anal ring begins to bulge out, it is referred to as external hemorrhoids.  It is the external hemorrhoids that are considered to be more bothersome and painful than internal hemorrhoids, for the hemorrhoids developing inside the anal canal do not have nerve endings.

Internal hemorrhoids are graded into four stages.

–       Grade 1 – The hemorrhoid is still in its initial stages of development, with the mass of dilated veins only bulging out into the anal canal.  It may interfere with smooth bowel movements, and its presence is usually felt only at times when the individual is constipated.

–       Grade 2 – The hemorrhoid grows a little big in size and protrudes out of the anal opening during passage of stools.  The person will feel this lump around their anal ring while wiping after a bowel movement, but it will retreat back into the anal canal spontaneously.

–       Grade 3 – Here, the hemorrhoid that protrudes outward, fails to go back into the canal on their own.  They will have to be pushed back manually by the individual.

–       Grade 4 – At this stage, the hemorrhoid will not be able to retreat back into the anal canal, either spontaneously or with manual help.

The internal hemorrhoids that have reached grade 4 of development are at the highest risk of becoming strangulated, and strangulated hemorrhoids bring about severe pain.

Hemorrhoids become strangulated when they get trapped within the anal canal and become constricted with a cessation of blood supply.  Such hemorrhoids can lead to necrosis and death.  Yes, death of hemorrhoids is good news, but if it becomes strangulated and is not taken care of medically, it can bring about complications like gangrene setting in, infections, abscess and pus formation, all of which can only make the condition more serious.