Will a Hemorrhoid Go Away on Its Own?

Every year in the United States, about 10 million people seek medical treatment for painful hemorrhoids, which are swollen, irritated veins within or near the anus. In fact, hemorrhoids are so common, it can be tempting to treat them on your own at home. But should you?

At his practice in Deerfield Beach, Florida, Michael H. Tarlowe, MD, helps patients find relief for painful hemorrhoids, tailoring each treatment to the type of hemorrhoid you have, its location, and other factors. Here, learn the basics about hemorrhoids, including why they happen and why medical evaluation is important.

Hemorrhoids 101

Hemorrhoids happen when pressure on the blood vessels in or near your anus causes swelling and irritation. Hemorrhoids can form in the vessels inside your anus (internal hemorrhoids) or just outside the anal sphincter (external hemorrhoids).

Hemorrhoids are really common, in part because so many factors can play a role in hemorrhoid formation, including:

Hemorrhoids also become a lot more common with age.

Hemorrhoid symptoms can vary depending on the location or size of the hemorrhoid and other factors. Common symptoms include:

Some hemorrhoids feel like a hard or fleshy lump protruding from your anus.

When to seek medical treatment

It’s true that mild hemorrhoid symptoms can eventually go away, especially with a little TLC. Soaking the area in warm water, using wet wipes when you go to the bathroom, and applying over-the-counter hemorrhoid creams can help. Eating more fiber, being more physically active, and losing extra pounds can also help reduce hemorrhoid symptoms.

However, it’s important to know that while hemorrhoid symptoms may resolve initially, the veins that swell and cause those uncomfortable symptoms are still there. That means if you have hemorrhoid symptoms that go away, there’s a good chance they’ll recur unless they’re medically treated.

What’s more, hemorrhoids share some symptoms with more serious medical problems like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and colon cancer. Having a medical evaluation is essential for determining if you have a hemorrhoid or if another problem is causing your symptoms.

Relief for painful hemorrhoids

Before prescribing a treatment for your hemorrhoids, Dr. Tarlowe performs an exam, reviewing your health history and your symptoms while looking for visible signs of hemorrhoids. He may recommend a sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy, minimally invasive procedures that can definitively diagnose hemorrhoids while ruling out other problems that could be causing your symptoms.

Treating hemorrhoids

Once hemorrhoids are diagnosed, Dr. Tarlowe determines the most appropriate treatment. Once again, depending on the results of your exam, your symptoms, and other factors, he may recommend medication and lifestyle changes, or he might suggest a procedure to remove the hemorrhoids once and for all.

Dr. Tarlowe offers several options for removing painful hemorrhoids, including surgical removal and an in-office treatment called rubber band ligation. If you have a painful clot in an external hemorrhoid, he can also remove the clot to provide immediate relief. Other hemorrhoids can be treated with sclerotherapy to close off the swollen veins so circulation is diverted elsewhere.

Don’t ignore your symptoms

Because hemorrhoids share similar symptoms with more serious health problems, like cancer and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), having a medical evaluation is always recommended to ensure you receive the right treatment as soon as possible.

By customizing hemorrhoid care, Dr. Tarlowe provides the relief you’re looking for while helping prevent hemorrhoids in the future. To learn how he can help you find hemorrhoid relief, call 954-210-7127 or request an appointment online with Dr. Tarlowe today.

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