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Hemorrhoids, or swollen veins near your anus or lower rectum, usually aren’t a serious problem. But if you have painful, severe hemorrhoids, you might need to have them removed. Doctors at Rush can help decide what treatment is best for you.

Hemorrhoids: what you should know

  • Causes of hemorrhoids include constipation, sitting for long periods, straining when you go to the bathroom and not eating enough fiber.
  • Many women get hemorrhoids while pregnant.
  • The most common symptom of hemorrhoids is bright red blood on toilet paper or on the outside of your stool after you go to the bathroom. Some people with hemorrhoids have no symptoms.

How can I find out if I have hemorrhoids?

These are the most common symptoms of hemorrhoids:

  • Bright red blood on toilet paper or in your stool after you go to the bathroom
  • Itching or pain around your anus
  • Lumps near your anus (if you have an external hemorrhoid)

Having these symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have hemorrhoids. Many other conditions (such as anal fissures, warts and polyps) have similar symptoms.

See a doctor if you have any of these symptoms and it doesn’t go away. Whatever your problem, doctors at Rush can help you find its root.

Care for hemorrhoids at Rush

In most cases, lifestyle changes such as eating more fiber are enough to treat hemorrhoids.

If you have painful or severe hemorrhoids, your care at Rush might also involve one or more of the following:

  • Stool softeners
  • Band ligation (also called hemorrhoid banding), a nonsurgical procedure to remove hemorrhoids
  • Infrared coagulation, a method of shrinking hemorrhoids with heat
  • Hemorrhoidectomy, or surgical removal of hemorrhoids

Why choose Rush for hemorrhoid care

  • Colon and rectal surgeons at Rush have helped pioneer several minimally invasive techniques, including colorectal laparoscopy and intestinal robotic surgery. These techniques, which involve smaller incisions, can lead to less pain and shorter recovery times.

Departments and programs that treat this condition