The aims are to remove your piles and make sure they do not come back. At the same time, there should be no damage to your sphincter muscle, to avoid loss of control of your motions and wind.
The operation should remove the piles tissue, and stop any bleeding, clotting and discharge of mucus. The tests we do should also rule out any other causes for these symptoms.
Are there any alternatives?
By this stage, you have probably tried all the more simple treatments without success. These include injections, nipping or banding the piles with little rubber rings and freezing the piles.
Simple stretching of the sphincter muscle to reduce any tightness works well for a single bad attack of clotting piles. It is not so good for piles that are dropping down beyond the sphincter or for skin tags. There is a risk of damage to bowel control after stretching. Sometimes lasers are used to remove the piles instead of the usual scalpel. This is often just a personal choice of the surgeon.
What if you do nothing?
If you do nothing, the piles will stay about as troublesome as they are now or get worse. They will not get better unless they happen during pregnancy, when they should improve after the baby is delivered. You may think your symptoms are coming from the piles, but they may really be caused by something else, higher up in the bowel. If you do nothing, you could miss out on important treatment.
Author: Mr Michael Edwards FRCSEng FRCSEd. Consultant general surgeon.
© Dumas Ltd 2006