Hemorrhoid Banding: What to Expect

Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the lower rectum or anus. They can cause bleeding, itching, and pain. While most hemorrhoids resolve with home treatment, some can be harder to get rid of. There are several non-invasive treatments for hemorrhoids. In cases of highly symptomatic hemorrhoids, banding is one approach that can help. Here’s what you need to know about hemorrhoid banding.

When Hemorrhoid Banding is used

As mentioned above, in cases of highly symptomatic hemorrhoids, hemorrhoid banding (sometimes called rubber band ligation) may be used. These symptoms include severe pain, severe bleeding, prolapsing (protrusion through the anus), and hemorrhoids with blood clots. Hemorrhoid banding is a non-invasive, non-surgical procedure that cuts off the hemorrhoid’s blood supply. Eventually, the hemorrhoid falls off as a loss of blood supply.

Before the Procedure

In the days leading up to the procedure, your doctor may ask you to stop taking certain medications. These include ibuprofen, aspirin, or any other drug that makes it difficult for blood to clot. Your doctor may also perform some diagnostics prior to the procedure to identify the hemorrhoid and its state. This may include a physical examination, a rectal examination, a sigmoidoscopy, or an anoscopy.

During the Hemorrhoid Banding Procedure

The entire hemorrhoid banding procedure only takes about five minutes. During the procedure, your doctor will place a tube-like instrument in your anus so they can examine the hemorrhoid. They will then put a tight rubber band around the base of the hemorrhoid. This cuts off the blood supply. You may experience some discomfort during the procedure.

After the procedure

After your doctor performs the hemorrhoid banding, your doctor will advise you regarding recovery and may schedule a checkup or another appointment. You may need multiple bandings to remove a hemorrhoid. Hemorrhoids may take around a week to fall off after a successful banding procedure.

In the days following your procedure, you may have some difficulty with controlling bowel movements and passing gas. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do at home to help with this. For one, make sure you move your bowels right when you feel the urge to do so. Do not sit on the toilet for long periods of time, and don’t strain during bowel movements. To avoid constipation and straining, eat lots of fiber, stay hydrated, and exercise. Additionally, you should avoid heavy lifting for two or three weeks.

While serious complications are rare with this procedure, there are a few signs to look out for after your hemorrhoid banding. These include any signs of infection (like fever or chills), passing a lot of blood, having uncontrollable pain, having trouble urinating, and developing an aching feeling between the rectum and genitals. Call your doctor if any of these symptoms develop.

Our experienced team at GHP has years of experience performing hemorrhoid banding. We can help establish the best plan of care for your situation. Contact any of our office locations to learn about the options we offer and schedule an appointment today.

Hemorrhoids: An Overview

Hemorrhoids is a term given to a condition in which the veins around the anus or rectum become swollen or inflamed. They can occur inside the rectum or around the anus. Hemorrhoids are extremely common- around 3 in 4 adults will experience hemorrhoids, and about half of all people will have hemorrhoids by age 50. 

Here’s an overview of hemorrhoids. 

Symptoms of Hemorrhoids

The symptoms of hemorrhoids vary based on whether they are internal (inside the rectum) or external (around the anus). External hemorrhoids can cause bleeding, pain, irritation or itching around the anus, and swelling around the anus. Internal hemorrhoids don’t usually cause any pain or discomfort, but they can cause bleeding during bowel movements. Sometimes, these can also push through the anus (prolapse), which can lead to irritation and pain. 

Causes and Risk Factors

The veins around your anus stretch under pressure, and may swell or bulge as a result of too much pressure. As such, anything causing this pressure can cause hemorrhoids. This includes straining during bowel movements, heavy lifting, anal intercourse, having a low-fiber diet, being pregnant, being obese, and sitting on the toilet for long periods of time. 

The risk of developing hemorrhoids increases with age. Tissues supporting veins in the anus and rectum weaken and stretch with age, and can increase risk. Additionally, this same stretching and weakening can happen during pregnancy as baby weight puts pressure around the anus.  

Treatment for Hemorrhoids

Treatment can often take place at home, and for mild cases includes using medications and taking warm baths. Larger or more persistent cases may be cause for seeking further medical attention. Doctors may recommend surgery or banding. Banding is non-invasive and non-surgical. To perform banding, a doctor places a rubber band around a hemorrhoid to cut its blood supply and cause it to wither. This may be recommended for cases with significant persistent bleeding. Typically, two or more cases are required for treatment with banding. 

Prevention

Preventing hemorrhoids involves a few simple lifestyle changes and home remedies. First, eating the proper amount of fiber is important; fiber softens stools and makes them easier to pass, decreasing the likelihood of straining or pressure. Exercise also helps, stimulating bowel function and keeping you regular and less likely to have straining bowel movements. Try not to sit for long periods of time, as it can increase pressure around the anus. Always use the bathroom as soon as possible when you need to defecate as well- waiting can cause build-up and increase strain. Don’t strain during bowel movements either, as this will add pressure around your anus and rectum. All of these simple behavior changes can be incredibly effective prevention measures. 

A warm bath for the buttocks can also help relieve irritation around the anus. A 20 minute warm bath after defecation and a few more baths each day can ease any potential flare-ups. Last, avoiding hard sitting surfaces can prevent hemorrhoids from forming, and also helps ease symptoms of existing ones. 

Our experienced team at GHP has years of experience helping people manage and treat hemorrhoids. We can help establish the best plan of care for your situation. Contact any of our office locations to learn about the options we offer and schedule an appointment today.

Hemorrhoid Banding

Believe it or not, hemorrhoids are a common health concern. The condition affects 75% of people at some point in their lives. While home remedies or topical creams are popular go-to treatment options, they only provide temporary relief. It is typical for example, for a person to suffer from recurrent symptoms and fare-ups after the use of over the counter products. Many patients even avoid seeking further treatment due to fear, embarrassment or a general lack of awareness.

While there are a number of non-invasive methods for treating hemorrhoids, at Gastroenterology Health Partners, we believe in a patient-focused approach. Our clinical team of 21 fellowship-trained Gastroenterologists and 13 advanced practice clinicians are able to remove internal hemorrhoids in a comfortable environment by utilizing the most effective and proven method of hemorrhoid banding available.

What is Hemorrhoid Banding?

Hemorrhoid banding is a non-surgical, quick and painless treatment option. Also known as rubber band ligation, it works by treating the root of the hemorrhoid while eliminating any symptoms. As internal hemorrhoids are made up of swollen blood vessels inside the rectum, patients are often unaware that they have them until they present symptoms such as pain, itching or bleeding.

Our advanced non-surgical treatment option takes just under a minute to perform. It requires no sedation or pain medication, and is covered by most insurance plans. Most patients experience a low rate of hemorrhoid recurrence and return to work the same day as treatment.

How does it work?

A single use, gentle suction device places a specialized rubber band around the base of the hemorrhoid where there are no pain-sensitive nerve endings. This band effectively cuts off the blood flow to the hemorrhoid, immediately relieving symptoms. Within a few days, both the band and the hemorrhoid shrink and fall off on their own accord. Often without the patient even noticing.

This particular method of hemorrhoid banding is safer and less invasive than other more traditional banding procedures that utilize larger instruments, or require fasting and sedation before treatment. When using our hemorrhoid banding procedure, less than 1% of patients report complications compared to other rubber band ligation methods where complications can occur in 20-50% of patients.

The signs and symptoms of hemorrhoids are similar to other more serious conditions. Therefore, it’s important that one consults with their doctor before seeking treatment. If not caught early on, hemorrhoids can worsen over time. In order to best prevent hemorrhoids in the future, avoid straining during bowel movements. Drinking plenty of water, getting the correct amount of daily fiber and not sitting for prolonged periods are also recommended.

If you are experiencing some of the signs and symptoms of hemorrhoids, contact Gastroenterology Health Partners today. Each of our five locations in the Louisville, Lexington and Southern Indiana area offer expert specialization in gastrointestinal care. Just visit our website to schedule an appointment at the location most convenient to you.

New Non-Invasive Methods for Treatment of Hemorrhoids

Akin to varicose veins, hemorrhoids are a common ailment for both men and women. In fact, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, “about half of adults older than age 50 have hemorrhoids.”

There are two types of hemorrhoids, internal and external. Internal hemorrhoids occur when the swollen blood vessels are inside the lining of the anus and lower rectum. When the inflamed veins however are found under the skin and around the anus, they are known as external hemorrhoids.

While fear and embarrassment often prevent people from seeking treatment, if left untreated, hemorrhoids can worsen over time. Despite many popular at home remedies and over the counter creams, it is recommended that one consult with their doctor immediately before beginning a treatment plan. While common, the signs and symptoms of hemorrhoids are also similar to many other more serious conditions.

Causes Of Hemorrhoids:

  • Strained bowel movements.
  • Prolonged sitting
  • Pressure on the veins due to pregnancy
  • A low fiber diet
  • Chronic constipation or diarrhea

Signs and Symptoms of Hemorrhoids:

  • Itching
  • Pain
  • Bleeding during bowel movements
  • A lump near the anus

Depending on the severity of the situation, there are advanced treatment options available that remove hemorrhoids without a surgical incision or staple. Many of these methods offer a long-term solution compared to over the counter creams by treating the cause of the hemorrhoids and can be done in an outpatient setting as suggested by your doctor.

Non-Invasive Treatment Options:

Rubber Band Ligation

Also known as “banding,” rubber band ligation treats bleeding, protruding, internal hemorrhoids by cutting off the blood supply and circulation to the hemorrhoid. This is done by placing a specialized rubber band around the base of the hemorrhoid. Within a week, both the band and banded portion of the hemorrhoid shrink and fall off on their own. Scar tissue then forms around the remaining part of the hemorrhoid, aiding in it’s further removal. This procedure takes only a few minutes to perform, is painless, and requires no recovery time.

Sclerotherapy Injection

Similar to “banding,” a sclerotherapy injection also cuts off the blood supply of the hemorrhoid, resulting in scar tissue to form and the hemorrhoid to shrink away. This occurs after the doctor injects a chemical solution into the internal hemorrhoid.

Coagulation Therapies

In infrared photocoagulation, infrared light is used on an internal hemorrhoid. The heat from the light causes scar tissue to form, cutting off the blood supply, shrinking the hemorrhoid, and preventing nearby veins to bulge into the anal canal. Electrocoagulation achieves the same results through an electric current.

If you are experiencing some of the signs and symptoms of hemorrhoids contact Gastroenterology Health Partners today. Our clinical team of 21 fellowship-trained Gastroenterologists and 13 advanced practice clinicians have been providing care to patients suffering from disorders of the digestive system since 2013. Each of our five locations in the Louisville, Lexington and Southern Indiana area offer expert specialization in gastrointestinal care. Just visit our website to schedule an appointment at the location most convenient to you.