Before plunging deep into the topic, it is important to understand the meaning of piles. Haemorrhoids are blood filled cushioned structures in the anal canal which help in the passage of stool.
Piles is a swollen or inflamed hemorrhoid which can occur inside or around the anus. family inheritance is also seen. Women are more susceptible to piles in pregnancy as the pressure from the growing uterus restricts the blood flow in the pelvis. Lifestyle factors also have a contributory effect.
Piles can be broadly classified into two types:
- Internal Piles: These are present within the rectum and are not visible to the naked eye. Neither can the person feel its presence. The only symptom of such piles is bleeding. In some cases due to stretch and pressure during the bowel movement, it can come out of the anus and then return to the original position inside the rectum.
- External Piles: These are present in the outer part of the anus and can be painful too. These may bleed as well. The treatment of such piles become necessary,and the doctor may even suggest the patient undergo surgery to get rid of the problem.
Internal piles are further classified into grades:
- Grade I – Piles do not protrusion from anus.
- Grade II – Protrusion through the anus during straining and defecation, but return spontaneously.
- Grade III - Protrude through the anus with defecation or straining, but manually reduced.
- Grade IV – Protrude and cannot be manually reduced.
How do Piles occur?
Inflamed hemorrhoids are called piles. Internal piles occur when the blood vessels inside the rectum become swollen. External hemorrhoids occur when the pressure on the anus is caused during the bowel movements.
Other factors responsible for the piles are genetics, constipation, pregnancy, vomiting, sneezing, sitting or standing for long periods of time, and holding the breath to do strenuous work.
What are the lifestyle risk factors which can aggravate the problem?
Though the main causes of the issue are mentioned above, yet the lifestyle matters a lot in the contribution of the development of piles. People need to understand the importance of eating food which has fiber. This increases the metabolic rate in the body which eases such issues.
Dietary alterations can be effective in curbing such issues. Foods like fast food, cheese, chips, icecream, processed foods, frozen food should be consumed in limitation only.
Moreover,sedentary lifestyle also adds to the problem. The absence of physical activity like exercises and walking affects the gastrointestinal motility which has extreme results like constipation or diarrhea. This leads to the development of piles.
What are the medical causes of piles?
- Anal injury
- Ascites is a liver disease which is caused due to the increase of fluid in the abdominal cavity.
- Inflammatory Bowel Diseases or IBD also leads to the problem. The identified example of such diseases is Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
An important thing to note here is that bleeding piles should not be ignored and the person should consult a doctor immediately. It may be a symptom of rectum cancer.
What are the complications or risks due to piles?
- It can lead to anemia
- Painful bowel movements
- Pain in the anal area after the bowel movement
- Infection may develop as the painful anal area can lead to poor hygiene
- Is blood supply to an internal hemorrhoid is absent then it can cause gangrene
What are the treatments for piles?
- Surgery is often recommended by the doctor for the inflamed piles in the external anal area. The laser is used for the removal of piles by burning the tissue causing piles. Sclerotherapy is one for the removal of varicose veins which is also one of the causes of piles.
- Internal piles are treatable with the medicines and alterations in lifestyle habits. Diet with fiber is recommended by the doctor. An active lifestyle should become a part of life.
Having complete knowledge of the issue can be very helpful in averting such problems in life. The human body is susceptible to develop several problems. But we can control some of these diseases by making the right choices.