Piles treatment without surgery is definitely possible. Not all piles (haemorrhoids) cases require surgery. Before exploring alternative treatments, one must first understand the stage the disease is in.
Before we begin
Are you sure you have Piles? Click here to understand the difference between piles, anal fissures and anal fistula.
When a surgeon examines you, he will first confirm the diagnosis with history and examination and will then try to understand why you developed piles. Not all piles cases require surgery.
Piles usually occurs because of low fibre diet and inadequacy of drinking plenty of water / liquids (not coke) ! Low fibre diets (rice for instance) lead to hard stools and straining. Straining damages the anal canal wall and leads to ballooning of the blood vessels.
Internal Piles and External Piles
If the ballooned vessels occur inside the anal canal, the condition is called ‘internal piles’. Piles which occur outside the anal canal are called ‘external piles’.
Stage 1 Piles (First degree Piles or Grade 1 Piles)
Internal piles which are confined entirely to the anal canal are called Stage 1 Piles. They only show up as bleeding after bowels.
Stage 2 Piles (Second degree Piles or Grade 2 Piles)
Piles that protrude out of the anus and automatically reduce back are Stage 2 piles.
Stage 3 Piles (Third degree Piles or Grade 3 Piles)
Third degree piles need to be manually pushed back into the anal canal by the sufferer after a bowel movement.
Stage 4 Piles (Fourth degree Piles or Grade 4 Piles)
Fourth degree piles remain outside the anus and cannot be manually pushed back in. They become painful.
Piles Treatment :
Piles Stages 1 – 2 can be treated without surgery.
First and second degree piles are treated with high fibre diet/supplements and plenty of water intake to soften the stool to avoid damaging the anal canal. Flavonoids (plant extract) and horse chestnut extract work quite well to shrink these piles. It’s imperative to stop smoking as nicotine is known very well to cause more bleeding and relapses. Spending too much time on the potty means you are constipated and this must be avoided.
Piles Stages 3 – 4 require surgery.
Third and fourth stages of piles need surgery for cure. Conventional surgery was avoided by many with the belief that they will recur, incontinence may occur and the pain may be too much.
External Piles in general need surgery to cure.
MIPH (Minimally Invasive Procedure for Haemorrhoids)
Today we have MIPH, a radical new technique for piles treatment. Instead of completely cutting off the piles, we now use a stapler gun to circumferentially envelope the piles at the root (about 4 cms) inside the anal canal. The idea is to excise part of the internal piles and cut off the blood supply to the lower piles (and hence causing them to shrink and go away).
Further since we are working inside the anal canal there is less pain. A closed wound because of stapler technology causes less bleeding. MIPH definitely helps reduce hospital stay enabling faster return to normal life.
Lifestyle changes are the best treatment for piles. Eat healthy (high fiber diet), drink healthy (drink plenty of liquids) and exercise. Do not spend too much time on the potty. Try to minimize smoking – nicotine is known to cause relapses.
Take care, and stay healthy!