Hemorrhoids: Overview

Hemorrhoids are a disorder of the rectum, where enlarged rectal blood vessels protrude from the rectum out of the anus. They may be caused or exacerbated by chronic constipation with rectal tenesmus. The rectal blood vessels then may become blocked and then enlarge and possibly burst.

Common symptoms include anorectal itch, anorectal burning, anorectal pain, and rectal bleeding. Hemorrhoids can both cause constipation and also be caused by chronic constipation.

An enlarged hemorrhoid may rupture leading to an anorectal hematoma or anal bleeding. A burst hemorrhoid vein is a common cause of one-time anorectal bleeding. However, there are other more serious causes of rectal bleeding (e.g. colon cancer).

Hemorrhoids are common with age and not generally dangerous, but can be a chronic issue. However, there are some types of “secondary hemorrhoids” which are caused by more serious underlying diseases (e.g. liver disease, cirrhosis, portal hypertension, etc.). See your doctor promptly for treatment and management of hemorrhoids.

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Note: This site is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. See your doctor or other qualified medical professional for all your medical needs.