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Hemorrhoid thrombosis occurs when a hemorrhoid forms a blood clot. This leads to the hemorrhoid becoming inflamed, tender, red or blue, and feels or appears hard. A hemorrhoid thrombosis can occur in an internal or external hemorrhoid, although they typically occur more in external hemorrhoids. When a hemorrhoid gets thrombosis, it is usually quite painful and sometimes requires surgery.
A hemorrhoid is the result of an engorged vein in the area of the anus or rectum. Internal hemorrhoids occur inside the rectum, and external hemorrhoids occur outside the recutm. They can often be itchy and painful, and will cause bleeding in the stool and when wiping the area with toilet paper.
The causes of hemorrhoids are many. It can be due to pregnancy, age, sitting too much, lack of exercise, or a diet low in fiber. Other causes can include straining when taking a bowel movement, lifting weights, and genetics. The cause of a hemorrhoid thrombosis is often the same as what causes a hemorrhoid, and any activity that causes lack of blood flow to the hemorrhoid can cause the problem.
A hemorrhoid thrombosis will often disappear on its own. After several weeks, the clot dissolves and normal blood flow returns. If this doesn’t occur, surgery may be required. Sometimes simply stopping the activity that caused the problem, such as sitting for a prolonged period of time or ceasing to lift weights, can fix the issue.
Other simple treatments can be done to help with a hemorrhoid thrombosis. Soaking in a shallow tub of hot water, known as a Sitz bath, and using creams with hydrocortisone can help to relieve the symptoms of the thrombosis and help with blood flow. If these or other remedies do not work to reduce the thrombosis, surgery is the next step.
There are several surgical procedures that are performed for a hemorrhoid thrombosis. The easiest and quickest is to drain the thrombosis by making an excision in it. This is not the best long-term solution though, as the hemorrhoid and accompanying thrombosis can easily come back.
Another common procedure is tubal ligation. This consists of tying a tight, rubber band around the two ends of the thrombosis. It cuts off the blood supply to the hemorrhoid, causing it to shrivel and die. This is not commonly used for a thrombosis, but is more effective than simply cutting it.
The most effective procedure for a hemorrhoid thrombosis is complete surgical removal of the problem in what is known as a full hemorrhoidectomy. Anesthesia is injected into the area and the thrombosis and blood vessel is removed. The problem can still return, but this procedure is considered the most effective.