Frequently Asked Question - About Piles
What are Piles?
Anal cushions inside the Anal canal are positioned at 3,7 11 o clock. The functions of the Anal cushions are to maintain anal continence and passage of stool. But as we get aged, due to repeated strain during constipation or pregnancy, or due to change in the lifestyle, these cushions descend down from their normal position. These conditions make the Anal cushions inflamed and swollen. This condition is known hemorrhoidal disease or piles.
If you have bleeding or pain in the rectum, does it mean that you have piles
No, pain and bleeding are not always due to Piles. However, the most common reason of bleeding from rectum is due to Piles. There could be many other reasons of bleeding per rectum like polyps, ulcers, inflammatory bowel diseases, diverticulitis and colorectal cancers.
The fresh blood which is not mixed with stools could be due to piles. The pain in the Anal area can be due to thrombosed piles, anal fissure or abscess. One of the most common reason of painful bleeding per rectum is anal fissure. Painful swelling can be due to thrombosed piles or abscess. A general surgeon can diagnose or tell you the main cause of bleeding or pain after the examination, proctoscopy or sigmoidoscopy.
What to do when you see blood in your stools? Should you visit doctor as soon as you notice blood in your stools?
Yes, visit or consult your doctor when you see the blood in the stool. Your doctor will diagnose the reason of the bleeding after examine.
If I visit a surgeon, then he/ she will recommend surgery -Does every case of piles require surgery?
In most of the cases, patients of piles can be treated without surgery. Usually, the surgeon advises you some medications along with certain changes in the life style. Whether you require the surgery or not, he can tell according to your physical condition.
I have been told by my family member to have only boiled food because I have Piles. I have also been advised to stop non-veg food. Is it right?
You will be advised to include plenty of fluids and fibre in your diet like All green leafy vegetables, whole grain flour and fruits are rich in fibre. It is not necessary to eat boiled food only.
What can I do to prevent Piles?
Apart from increasing fluid and fibre content in diet, you should also start some form of exercise including brisk walking, jogging and cycling. You should not delay in responding to the urge for defecation, prolonged or putting so much strain in toilet should be avoided. Avoid taking Newspapers, books or mobiles in the toilet.
Does Piles lead to cancer?
No. Piles do not lead to cancer. However, the initial symptoms of anorectal cancer are similar to that of piles. This is the main and important reason to consult a doctor if you have any symptoms.
Why should you not treat Piles as a taboo?
Piles are very common now a days and can be treated with very simple measures. But, Hesitation and embarrassment can lead to self-medication or seeking advice from internet. This can land up in getting treatment from quacks or unqualified self-proclaimed care providers. This can lead to worsening of the problem.
Can you live a normal life with Piles?
Absolutely yes. In the most of the cases, it can be treated with simple lifestyle measure and some patients require medical treatment. A very few patients require operations which can be performed with very advance techniques which are safe and done on day-care basis.
Does the risk of piles increase during pregnancy?
Yes, the symptoms of piles can occur more frequently during pregnancy. However, the treatment in most cases remains simple or tend to improve after the pregnancy is over.
Are piles, fissure and fistula different problems?
Yes, all these are different problems. Anal fissure is a cut or ulcer in the anal canal which is very painful and often bleeds. This can also be due to constipation and straining while defecation. A fibre rich diet, plenty of fluid and exercise can prevent you from the problem of anal fissure. Anal fistula is a due to infection of anal glands and subsequent abscess formation. Usually, the treatment of anal fistula is surgical.
Whom should I consult in case of symptoms?
You should consult a qualified proctologist or a general surgeon. it is also advised not to start self-medication or seek information from internet for treatment. One should not be influenced by unscrupulous marketing or the advertisements by many unqualified self- proclaimed treatment providers. They usually provide the symptomatic treatment, without diagnosing the real problem. it can lead to worsen the situation.