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Hemorrhoids often occur during pregnancy and after childbirth, which results from changes in the woman's body at this special time. Hemorrhoids are relatively common and troublesome ailment. What exactly are hemorrhoids? What are their symptoms and how can we deal with them?

Postpartum hemorrhoidsmay be the result of hormonal changes during pregnancy. This is primarily about the increase in progesterone, which contributes to the stretching of the veins. The cause of the formation of hemorrhoids in pregnancy may also be the enlargement of the uterus, putting pressure on the veins in the abdominal cavity. In this way, the pressure rises, resulting in the formation of hemorrhoids.

How are hemorrhoids formed?

Speaking of hemorrhoids, first you need to understand what hemorrhoids are. Hemorrhoids are structures that occur under physiological conditions in the anus. These are venous vessels that have a pillow-like shape.

These structures allow you to control the discharge of gases and stool. It can therefore be said that they act as a sealing and complement the action of anal sphincters.

Under the influence of certain factors, the hemorrhoids widen excessively, which leads to the formation of hemorrhoids, i.e. dilated hemorrhoids.

Postpartum hemorrhoids - stages of the disease

Hemorrhoids can be characterized by a variable degree of magnification, which makes it possible to distinguish four degrees of this disease:

  • first degree - in this case enlarged hemorrhoids do not fall out of the anus during defecation,
  • second degree - this degree causes haemorrhoids to fall out during defecation (defecation), but they regress spontaneously,
  • stage three - in this situation the hemorrhoids fall out, but do not come back spontaneously - they require manual evacuation,
  • fourth degree - in this case enlarged hemorrhoids cannot be drained manually.

Stages are used during qualification for surgical treatment, which is most often used in the case of stage III and IV of hemorrhoidal disease.

Hemorrhoids - causes

Dilation of the hemorrhoids and the formation of hemorrhoids is due to increased pressure and blood stagnation in the rectal venous plexuses. To the causessuch a state should be:

  • pregnancy - the enlarging uterus compresses the veins of the abdominal cavity, which predisposes to increase the pressure in these vessels and the appearance of hemorrhoids. Moreover, progesterone, the concentration of which increases during pregnancy, is a hormone that helps to stretch the walls of the veins,
  • chronic constipation - constipation is significantly more common during pregnancy, which is another factor that predisposes to the appearance of dilated hemorrhoids at that time,
  • intense exercise - increases the pressure inside the abdominal cavity,
  • sedentary lifestyle - significantly slows down intestinal peristalsis, which causes constipation,
  • obesity.

Pregnancy is a common cause of hemorrhoids. These may disappear after childbirth, but in some cases the problem persists even after a happy resolution.

Postpartum hemorrhoids - symptoms

What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids? Patients with hemorrhoids most often report:

  • discomfort and pain in the anal area,
  • impression of incomplete bowel movement,
  • anal itching,
  • rectal bleeding - in the case of hemorrhoids, bleeding typically occurs during defecation, especially when the stool is hard. Haemorrhoidal bleeding is characterized by the presence of fresh, vivid red blood. In the case of rectal bleeding, it is definitely worth seeing a doctor, because this symptom can also manifest other, much more serious diseases of the digestive tract,
  • leakage of mucus from the anus,
  • prolapse of hemorrhoids (this happens most often during defecation).

Hemorrhoids - diagnosis of hemorrhoidal disease

The basis for the diagnosis of hemorrhoids is primarily a physical examination. By viewing and examining the rectum (i.e. with a finger through the anus), the doctor is able to detect the presence of hemorrhoids.

In order to diagnose haemorrhoidal disease, a test called anoscopy is also used. Anoscopy allows you to see the final segment of the large intestine, i.e. the rectum and the anal canal.

During anoscopy, an apparatus is inserted into the rectum - an anoscope in the form of a rigid tube. The anoscope is inserted to a depth of about 10 cm. This examination is a painless procedure for the patient.

Postpartum hemorrhoids - home remedies

How to deal with hemorrhoids with home remedies?

Recommended methods that we can use at home include:

  • hot water sitz baths - that is, sitz baths that rely onimmersing the buttocks in warm water for several minutes. Warm water helps to relax the muscles and reduce the pressure in the veins,
  • oak bark sitz baths - sitz baths are also performed with the addition of oak bark infusion. The healing properties of this infusion have been known for a very long time. The infusion of oak bark contains tannins that have, among others, anti-inflammatory and vascular sealing properties, thanks to which they reduce the severity of symptoms of hemorrhoidal disease,
  • witch hazel tubs - witch hazel tubs with the addition of an infusion of this plant help to reduce symptoms in the course of hemorrhoids. The substances contained in witch hazel help to seal blood vessels and have anti-inflammatory properties.

Nasiadówki are symptomatic . In more advanced cases of haemorrhoidal disease, it is necessary to introduce pharmacological and sometimes even surgical treatment.

Postpartum hemorrhoids - pharmacological treatment of hemorrhoids

After childbirth, you can use, among others creams and suppositories containing local anesthetics (e.g. lidocaine) and compounds that strengthen blood vessels (e.g. tribenoside).

During pregnancy and breastfeeding, it is worth consulting a doctor in order to find out which preparations are allowed in this period.

Postpartum hemorrhoids - surgical treatment of hemorrhoids

In advanced cases, surgical treatment is sometimes necessary. This mainly applies to stage III and IV hemorrhoids.

Barron's procedure, which involves rubberizing hemorrhoids, is popular. A rubber band is placed on the enlarged hemorrhage, which causes ischemia of the excess tissue and its necrosis. After a while, the enlarged hemorrhoid comes off.

The Barron treatment is a safe and minimally invasive method of treating haemorrhoidal disease. Surgical treatment of hemorrhoids is performed by surgeons.

Hemorrhoids that appear during pregnancy usually decrease and disappear after delivery. Therefore, surgical treatment is rarely recommended for pregnant women.

However, in some cases the problem with hemorrhoids remains. Then it is worth consulting a doctor in order to determine the appropriate course of action.

Postpartum hemorrhoids - prevention of hemorrhoids

During pregnancy and after childbirth, it is very important to prevent the formation of hemorrhoids. How can you reduce the risk of hemorrhoidal disease?

It is worth first of all:

  • consume plenty of fluids, preferably still mineral water - appropriatehydration prevents constipation, which is a significant risk factor for the appearance of hemorrhoids,
  • introduce more fiber-rich foods into your diet. Speech here, among others about vegetables and fruits, as well as grain-rich foods. Fiber improves the functioning of our intestines and prevents constipation,
  • remember to be active; regular walks are enough to improve intestinal peristalsis and prevent constipation, which is promoted by a sedentary lifestyle,
  • avoid strong pressure during defecation. Strong pressure increases blood pressure and may predispose to the enlargement of haemorrhoids.

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