Hemorrhoids i.e. swollen veins with a blood clot are known as thrombosed hemorrhoids. Blood clots can form in both internal and external hemorrhoids. In case of internal hemorrhoids, blood clot can form even in the hemorrhoids located deep in the rectum. Thrombosed internal hemorrhoids are hard to diagnose and they can, but in very rare cases result in death due to blood poisoning.
Why do blood clots form in hemorrhoids?
Blood flow to the swollen hemorrhoid tissue becomes abnormal and the pooled blood gradually forms in to a clot. Area with the blood clot becomes bluish purple. This hemorrhoid tissue concentrated with visceral nerves causes intense pain compared to external or internal hemorrhoids without a clot. Pain results from tissue degradation caused by restricted blood flow to the hemorrhoid tissue by the clot as well as due to pushing of the surrounding tissue by the expanding clot. A strangulated thrombosed hemorrhoid is even more painful and maintaining proper anal hygiene becomes difficult. A bleeding hemorrhoid often increases the risk for infection and even more severe conditions such as gangrene.
Who is at high risk for developing thrombosed external hemorrhoids?
- Adults in the age group of 20-40 and old age people.
- Pregnant women.
- People who lift heavy weights or sit at work for long hours.
Symptoms of thrombosed hemorrhoids
- Can be felt as a hard lump in the anal region in case of thrombosed external hemorrhoids.
- ain that becomes worse within 48-72 hours of onset of the clot.
- Formation of anal skin tags after the hemorrhoid gets cured.
Treatment of thrombosed hemorrhoids
An untreated hemorrhoid often increases in size resulting in worse symptoms such as rupture of the hemorrhoid tissue and infections that are hard to cure. Hence, it has to be taken care right from the onset to cure as well as to prevent flare-ups. Thrombosed hemorrhoids are often treated with a combination of home remedies and surgical procedures. Before starting the treatment procedure it is essential to identify the type of hemorrhoid i.e. internal or external hemorrhoid.
Home remedies for hemorrhoids with blood clot
- Taking high fiber diet to increase the bulk of the stools and also to avoid straining while emptying the bowels.
- Use of stool softeners and fiber supplements to soften the stools.
- Taking sitz bath regularly to relieve the pain temporarily and also shrinks the swollen tissue.
- Regular practice of simple exercises to improve bowel activity.
- Drinking plenty of water to relieve symptoms of constipation and also to keep the body hydrated to prevent further worsening of symptoms.
- Applying mineral oil or cocoa butter to reduce irritation.
- Placing ice pack at the inflamed region so as to cut down blood supply to the swollen tissue and temporarily numb the area to reduce pain.
Careful use of cold therapy and sitz bath often causes the clot to dissolve but it takes time.
Medical procedures for treatment of thrombosed hemorrhoids
If thrombosed hemorrhoids symptoms cannot be kept under control through simple home remedies then medical procedures are used to offer relief to the patient. Commonly used medical procedures for internal thrombosed hemorrhoids include rubber band ligation, sclerotherapy and coagulation of hemorrhoids. An early diagnosed external thrombosed hemorrhoid is often treated by cutting the thrombosed tissue to remove the clot. After removing the clot, careful use of home remedies often shrinks the hemorrhoid tissue postponing the need to perform surgery. In some cases it may even completely cure the swelling.
If these medical procedures do not offer satisfactory results hemorrhoid surgery (hemorrhoidectomy) is used to remove the swollen tissue. Though other treatment strategies seem to work, surgical removal of the hemorrhoid tissue containing the clot is considered the best treatment for thrombosed hemorrhoid.
Prevention of thrombosed hemorrhoids
Simple lifestyle changes can prevent hemorrhoids.
- Take plenty of water and fiber rich diet.
- Regular practice of exercises improves muscle tone and reduces the risk for hemorrhoids.
- Avoid using laxatives and having foods that cause diarrhea to prevent worsening of existing hemorrhoids.
- Pregnant woman who are at high risk of hemorrhoids should practice kegel exercises.
- Empty the bowels whenever you feel the urge to pass the stools. Neglecting the urge increases straining at stools.