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Is Piles the only anorectal disease?

anorectal disease anorectal conditions colon problems anorectal malformation anorectal disorder anorectal anomaly anorectal malformation types anorectal conditions types of anorectal disorders congenital anorectal anomalies high anorectal malformation common anorectal conditions anorectal disease symptoms

Piles is the most widespread anorectal disease among adults—as much as 75% of the Indian population experience mild or severe symptoms of congenital anorectal anomalies. The most simple way to understand this disease is that there are swollen veins that develop around the anus or lower rectum. Contrary to popular belief, men and women have equal chances of developing such anorectal ailments.

What are the types of anorectal disease?

A few other anorectal malformation types that you might not be aware of are:

  1. Anal Fissures: Anal fissures entail a tear in the inner lining of the anus. They can happen because of the passing of hard or large stools and effectively causing uncomfortable bowel movements. If these anal fissures are severe, they can expose the muscle underneath. 
  2. Anal Warts: These are small warts or bumps that occur in and around the anal area. Sometimes, they are so small that the person doesn’t even know they have them. Anal warts are a type of Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD).
  3. Anal Fistula: An anal fistula is described as a tunnel that runs from the anus to some other part of the skin around it. This is mostly the continuation of another anorectal ailment and is mostly cured through surgery.

What are the causes of piles?

The causes for piles are mostly unknown, but some factors might increase your chances of developing anorectal ailments. Some of them are:

  1. Genetics: Having a family history of piles might increase the chance of having that disease at some point in your life.
  2. Irregular Bowel Movements: Any strain experienced during bowel movements might lead to swelling of the veins internally.
  3. Idle Sitting: Sitting idle and doing nothing for long periods, especially on the toilet, can lead to common anorectal conditions in the future.
  4. Prolonged Constipation: Chronic constipation can also disrupt your system, cause uneasiness, and also lead to piles, in many conditions.
  5. Heavy Weight Lifting: Lifting unusually heavy amounts of weight can put a lot of pressure on the anal regions and perpetually harm them. This mostly includes unsupervised gym activities or heavy lifting.
  6. Pregnancy: If you’re pregnant, you are more likely to develop haemorrhoids. The large size and increased weight of the uterus can put more pressure on the colon, causing further complications.
  7. Unprotected Sex: The most common reason for anal warts is unprotected sex caused due to human papillomavirus (HPV), which is the most common STD.

What are the stages of piles?

Stage 1: This stage usually goes by on its own, and the patient experiences no major pain or discomfort.

Stage 2: Here, too, the swelling can go unnoticed, but the level of uneasiness is a bit more than Stage 1.

Stage 3: Here, the haemorrhoid can be seen protruding out, but can easily be pushed in. The patient may experience a certain level of pain at this point.

Stage 4: In this stage, the haemorrhoid cannot be pushed inside and should be treated only with the help of a medical professional. Do not try to push it inside on your own and consult a doctor immediately.

What are the best remedies for piles?

Some of the best remedies of piles at milder stages like 1 and 2 include medication and adopting a healthy lifestyle. A doctor must treat anything that does not alleviate the pain.

Common symptoms of piles

Usually, anorectal malformations have many common symptoms that are very easy to detect. The disease is almost always self-diagnosed, due to the level of unease the affected person experiences.

The following anorectal disease symptoms are almost always common among major ailments:

  • Itching or irritation of any sort in your anal region
  • Swelling and redness around your anus (typically, swelling of the veins)
  • Bleeding in and around the anal area
  • Protruding haemorrhoid in the anal region leading to discomfort and irritation
  • Bleeding or a sharp pain while using the washroom
  • Smelly discharge or puss during excretion
  • Difficulty controlling bowel movements

Read: Reasons and Treatment for Blood in Stool

What is the treatment of anorectal disorders?

1. Medication

Medication usually works in the initial stages of anorectal disease in case of mild discomfort. The doctor might prescribe pain relief medications, creams, ointments that contain ingredients like hydrocortisone and lidocaine to ease the pain. Blood pressure medications like oral nifedipine or diltiazem can help in the case of anal fissures.

2. Home Remedies

Eating high fibre foods like vegetables and whole grains softens your stool and increases its frequency, thereby easing any colon problems faster. Having warm showers instead of cold can also help in mellowing the swollen area. These methods are more preventative in nature and can be practised even when one doesn’t have the disease.

3. Medical and Surgical Procedures

  • Artificial Bowel Sphincter: In this procedure, an implantable silicone is placed around the anal canal, and the patient can inflate and deflate it while defecating. This surgery typically takes a few days for recovery and used in cases of an extreme risk of infection or high anorectal malformations.
  • Hemorrhoidectomy: This is a procedure used to treat piles, where using local anaesthesia coupled with sedatives, the doctor extracts the tissues that cause bleeding. This surgery might result in short-term pain that can be treated with time, and also urinary tract infections along with some discomfort while passing stool.
  • Lateral Internal Sphincterotomy (LIS): In this surgery for chronic anal fissures, the doctor uses a local anaesthetic to cut a small incision within the anal sphincter.
  • Warts Removal Surgery: In this surgery, the doctor uses anaesthesia to cut anal warts off. If the warts are too deep, the surgery might have to be done in parts. You might need general or spinal anaesthesia depending on the extent of warts.

Closing thoughts

The above treatments, especially medical and surgical, are best done by a proctologist. It is important that for every step during your treatment, you consult a medical professional and seek expert guidance.

Apart from this, having a clean and healthy lifestyle can help in the long-term, not just for anorectal conditions, but for others as well.

To get the best comprehensive medical treatment for piles, visit CK Birla Hospital

Also, read: Piles and Fissures – Know the Difference

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