Hemorroids = hemorrhoids = haemorrhoids
While physicians usually use the term hemorrhoids (US English) and haemorrhoids (UK English), which come from Latin and Greek, while the term hemorroids is often used by the lay public. For easier searching of our website, we intentionally use both terms.
Haemorrhoids are knot-like extensions of veins in the area of the anus. They can appear under the skin near the anal opening or under the mucous membrane of the anus. Hemorrhoids are a very frequent phenomenon. Up to 70 % of people will have hemorrhoids at least once in their life, and 50 % of the adult population will experience problems caused by them.
Mild hemorrhoids usually do not cause problems and require not treatment.
If hemorrhoids begin to cause pain, bleeding, itching, and other symptoms, we can speak of hemorrhoidal disease.
Hemorrhoidal disease is quite unpleasant and painful, and leads to further serious health risks.
According to their location, we classify hemorrhoids as internal and external.
We classify internal hemorrhoids into four stages.
In the first stage, they aren't visible and can only be detected with the finger during a rectal exam. They manifest themselves as occasional spots of bright red blood after a bowel movement.
In the second state of the disease, haemorrhoids increase in size, and during a bowel movement prolapse out of the anal opening and then automatically return back inside. These manifest themselves through more frequent bleeding, itching, burning, and eventually pain in the anal area.
The third stage means permanent prolapse of hemorrhoids, which often bleed, and undergo infectious changes with swelling and pain. The patient has the feeling of a "moist anus" due to the production of mucus by the prolapsed lining of the anal channel. They can be freely pushed back into the anus.
In the fourth stage of the disease, changes occur in the connective tissue of the part of the haemorrhoid that is permanently fixed outside the anal channel, and is subject to serious complications such as thromboses and infections.
Why are they so frequent?
There are several reasons for the frequent occurrence of haemorrhoids: heredity, stress, constipation, a sedentary lifestyle, poor dietary habits with insufficient intake of liquids, insufficient dietary fibre, and excessive intake of irritative foods or alcohol.
Every woman who has given birth also has a high likelihood of hemorrhoids, although not always in the same form or extent.
How do hemorrhoids manifest themselves?
The first symptoms of external haemorrhoids are often itching and higher, even painful sensitivity to touch. Internal hemorrhoids are less conspicuous - in the beginning there is an unpleasant feeling of pressure and feelings similar to constipation. Later typical symptoms involve a dull or sharp pain, and sometimes bleedings.
What is the greatest risk posed by haemorrhoids?
The greatest danger posed by haemorrhoids is that they can camouflage warning signs of a much more serious illness - intestinal tumours. Sadly, the Czech Republic is in first place when it comes to bowel cancer occurrence. For this reason, if you discover blood in your bowel movement, an endocsopic bowel examination is required as soon as possible.