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an enlarged (varicose) vein in the mucous membrane inside or just outside the rectum; called also pile.

Internal hemorrhoids usually are first noticed when minor bleeding occurs with defecation. Pain occurs rarely, unless there is an associated disorder such as an anal fissure, thrombosis, or strangulation of the affected vein. External hemorrhoids produce varying degrees of pain, feelings of pressure, itching, irritation, and a palpable mass. Bleeding occurs only if the external hemorrhoid is injured or ulcerated and begins to break down.

Hemorrhoids are caused by increased pressure on the veins of the anus. Prolonged sitting, constipation, and hard, dry stools that are difficult to pass can lead to straining and sitting at stool for long periods of time, all of which add pressure on the anal veins. Failure to follow through on the urge to defecate can also lead to hemorrhoids. In women, probably the single most common cause is pregnancy.

External hemorrhoids can be treated by local applications of cold and an astringent cream, by sitz baths, and by avoidance of constipation. Internal hemorrhoids may require sclerosing or cryosurgery to obliterate the affected tissue. More advanced, chronic hemorrhoids usually must be removed surgically by ligation and excision (hemorrhoidectomy) or by barron ligation.
Types of hemorrhoids.
external hemorrhoid one distal to the pectinate line.
internal hemorrhoid one originating above the pectinate line and covered by mucous membrane.
prolapsed hemorrhoid an internal hemorrhoid that has descended below the pectinate line and protruded outside the anal sphincter.
strangulated hemorrhoid an internal hemorrhoid that has prolapsed sufficiently and for a long enough time for its blood supply to become occluded by the constricting action of the anal sphincter.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


(hem'ŏ-royd), Avoid the misspelling hemroid and its many variants.
Denoting one of the tumors or varices constituting hemorrhoids.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


1. An itching or painful mass of dilated veins in swollen anal tissue.
2. hemorrhoids The pathological condition in which such painful masses occur. Also called piles.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


(hem'o-royd) [Gr. haimorrhois]
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Veins of the internal or external hemorrhoidal plexuses and the immediately surrounding tissues. Hemorrhoids are most often referred to only when diseased (i.e., enlarged, painful, bleeding). Other anorectal conditions (e.g., anal fissure, condylomata, anal cancers) may produce similar symptoms and must be distinguished from hemorrhoids by appropriate examination. Synonym: pilesillustration;


Therapy depends on the severity of the symptoms, not the extent of the hemorrhoids. In many instances, the only therapy required is improvement in anal care, adherence to appropriate fluid intake and diet if necessary, and administration of stool softeners to prevent straining to have a bowel movement. Measures to reduce local pain and congestion include the temporary use of local anesthetic agents, lubrication, cold compresses, warm sitz baths, and thermal packs. The necessity of surgery or other modalities of direct intervention (e.g., latex band ligation, sclerotherapy, cryosurgery, infrared photocoagulation, laser surgery) need not be applied until the acute process resolves except in cases of significant bleeding, intractable pain, recurrent episodes, and various individualized considerations. See: hemorrhoidectomy

external hemorrhoid

Hemorrhoid located at or distal to the pectinate line (dentate margin), covered by anodermal epithelium or skin and extremely sensitive to most stimuli.
See: hemorrhoid for illus.

internal hemorrhoid

Hemorrhoid located proximal to the pectinate line, covered by mucous membrane and relatively insensitive to direct noxious stimuli.
See: hemorrhoid for illus.

mixed (or combined) hemorrhoid

Hemorrhoid that incorporates both internal and external components.
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prolapsed hemorrhoid

The protrusion of an internal hemorrhoid through the anus.

strangulated hemorrhoid

A prolapsed hemorrhoid that is trapped by the anal sphincter, thus compromising blood flow to the vein in the hemorrhoid.
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners


An area around the anus where veins become dilated and the tissue swells, causing itching and pain.
Mentioned in: Enterobiasis
Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Patient discussion about hemorrhoid

Q. What are hemorrhoids?

A. Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the anal canal. This common problem can be painful, but it’s usually not serious.

Veins can swell inside the anal canal to form internal hemorrhoids. Or they can swell near the opening of the anus to form external hemorrhoids. You can have both types at the same time. The symptoms and treatment depend on which type you have.

Source: WebMD

Q. What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids? My husband complains that when he goes to the bathroom he bleeds. Does this mean he has hemorrhoids?

A. The commonest symptom of internal hemorrhoids is bright red blood in the toilet bowl or on one's feces or toilet paper. However, Many anorectal problems, including fissures, fistulae, abscesses, or irritation and itching (pruritus ani), have similar symptoms and are incorrectly referred to as hemorrhoids. If he is also in pain, then go see a Doctor.

Q. How to prevent Hemorrhoids? My brother is suffering from Hemorrhoids. I am very worried about getting them to and want to know how can I prevent them?

A. it's time to change to a healthier diet..one with fibers and vegetables.avoid causes like: Increased straining during bowel movements,portal hypertension, Obesity and Excessive consumption of alcohol or caffeine.

More discussions about hemorrhoid
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References in periodicals archive ?
There are many treatment options available based on the degree of the haemorrhoids, Milligan et al described haemorrhoidectomy in 1937.
Transanal Haemorrhoidal Dearterialisation (THD) is a relatively recent development, which is approved by NICE, the National Institute for Health & Care Excellence, and is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure used to treat haemorrhoids.
Table-1: Prevalence of Confounding Variable in both Treatment Groups and Control Group Variables Aloe TENS Control p value * Age (Mean [+ or 34.1 [+ or 3 5.0 [+ or 33.8 [+ or > 0.05 -] SD) -] 0.7 -] 0.5 -] 0.7 Haemorrhoid Gr.
The study included 100 patients who were regularly attending the hospital for the treatment and had given consent of participation in the study and of symptomatic grade III and IV haemorrhoids. The patients were equally grouped into two; Ligasure haemorrhoidectomy (50 patients) and the conventional haemorrhoidectomy either open (Milligan and Morgan) or the closed (Ferguson) technique (50 patients) using sealed envelopes.
Haemorrhoids are one of the most common afflictions of human beings from times immemorial.
Material and Methods: A total of 116 patients with symptomatic 2nd degree haemorrhoids were randomly divided into two groups, RBL and IST (58 patients each) respectively and a baseline symptoms severity score was noted for each patient.
Hemorrhoids, a varicose condition is one of the commonest illnesses which causes per rectal bleeding.1 The main effective and ultimate treatment for 3rd or 4th degree haemorrhoids is Haemorrhoidectomy.2 Numerous other procedures have also been practiced, varying from open or closed sharp excision, laser therapy, ultrasonic scalpel dissection to stapled Hemorrhoidectomy.3-6
The doctor places one or two tiny rubber bands around the bottom of the internal haemorrhoid, cutting off the circulation and causing the haemorrhoid to shrink and fall off within a week.
Large or prolapsing haemorrhoids can be treated by using a procedure called banding, in which a rubber band is placed around the base of the haemorrhoid.
On inspection, they resemble a bunch of grapes and patients are usually able to manually push the haemorrhoid back inside the anus.
Just last week market research in America revealed that haemorrhoid cream is the most popular item trousered by shoplifters.