Piles are vascular cushions just inside the back passage which are bigger than normal. The word piles is used interchangeably with the word
haemorrhoids (they are the same thing). They often occur when there is an increase in abdominal pressure (for example when one strains to pass stool
or in pregnancy) and the vast majority of piles do not cause symptoms. The commonest symptoms that do arise are bleeding with bowel movements,
discomfort, prolapse of the piles at the bottom end (felt usually as lumps after a bowel movement) or itching/irritation around the back passage.
What will happen in clinic?
I will discuss your symptoms and go through the rest of your medical history to establish the diagnosis. I will then examine you, in the presence of a
chaperone, which will likely involve an internal examination. I will then talk to you about whether there are any investigations needed to make sure of
What treatment options are there?
There are many different treatments for piles and the options which are best for you depend very much on the size, number and configuration of your
piles, as well as many other considerations. Many people do not need any specific treatment for their piles, for example if constipation is the main
problem leading to the piles then things will improve with manipulation of the bowels to avoid this. Beyond this, some piles are potentially amenable
to treatment in clinic (rubber band therapy), whereas others are better treated with surgery. Once I have conducted a thorough assessment I will make
a personalised recommendation for your piles which we can discuss and talk through to arrive at a final decision.