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Hemorrhoids Specialist

John M Rivas, M.D. -  - Gastroenterology and Endoscopy

Rivas Digestive Center

John M Rivas, M.D.

Gastroenterology and Endoscopy & Transplant Hepatology located in Hollywood, FL

Hemorrhoids are a problem that develops in many people, but some excellent treatments are available for these painful, swollen veins. Expert gastroenterologist John Rivas, MD, of Rivas Digestive Center in Hollywood, Florida, provides a range of effective solutions to troublesome hemorrhoids, including advanced, minimally invasive procedures that remove hemorrhoids for good. Call Rivas Digestive Center today to book a consultation or schedule an appointment online.

Hemorrhoids Q&A

What are hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are veins on your anus (external hemorrhoids) or in the anal canal (internal hemorrhoids) that swell and become uncomfortable. They might protrude or hang down, causing symptoms such as:

  • Pain
  • Itching
  • Bleeding
  • Burning sensation

External hemorrhoids can be exceedingly painful because there are high numbers of nerve endings in your anus. These hemorrhoids can sometimes lead to blood clots developing in the veins. The blood clots cause thrombosed hemorrhoids, which are hard, painful lumps. 

Internal hemorrhoids tend to be less painful than external hemorrhoids, as the anal canal has far fewer nerve endings than the anus. In fact, you might not know you have internal hemorrhoids at first. However, they can rupture and start bleeding if you become constipated and pass a hard stool.

What causes hemorrhoids?

Most hemorrhoids develop because of excessive straining when passing stools. If you have recurring constipation, straining hard and for long periods during bowel movements can overstress the veins in your anal canal and anus. Sitting for too long on the toilet also causes strain and makes hemorrhoids more likely to develop.

Lack of dietary fiber is the primary cause of constipation. Eating foods that are rich in fiber like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains helps to soften stools and get them passing through your system more quickly, so they're less liable to dry out and compact.

It's also crucial to make sure you're drinking plenty of water throughout the day and getting regular exercise to assure the health of your bowels — and the rest of your body. Although constipation is the most common cause of hemorrhoids, having frequent bouts of diarrhea or using laxatives too often can also be to blame.

You're more likely to develop hemorrhoids as you get older and during pregnancy, and a family history of hemorrhoids is also a risk factor.

How are hemorrhoids treated?

Hemorrhoids can heal without treatment if they're mild and you address their causes in good time. They will come back if you get into bad habits again, though, and if you've had hemorrhoids once, they’re more likely to be a problem in the future.

If your hemorrhoids need treatment, Dr. Rivas can prescribe several medicated products like creams or pads to soothe the swollen veins. You can also use suppositories (special pills you insert into your anal canal) to lessen the itching and discomfort.

If your hemorrhoids aren't improving through these conservative approaches, or they're severe enough to cause you significant pain, Dr. Rivas can perform one of a number of procedures to either destroy or remove your hemorrhoids. These procedures include:

  • Rubber band ligation 
  • Sclerotherapy
  • Infrared, laser, or bipolar coagulation 
  • External hemorrhoid thrombectomy 
  • Hemorrhoidectomy
  • Stapled hemorrhoidectomy 

Dr. Rivas explains what these options are and which would be most suitable for you at your consultation. Call Rivas Digestive Center today to schedule your appointment, or you can book using the online form.