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Do you think you have a thrombosed hemorrhoid? They are troubling, painful, and one of the more common conditions we see. I’ll now tell you about them.   There are two main types of hemorrhoids: Internal and external. Almost all thrombosed hemorrhoids are external hemorrhoids (I talk more about internal hemorrhoids in this post). Thrombosed external hemorrhoids typically are associated with a lump near the anus and acute onset of pain. They don’t usually cause one to have a fever (think abscess). Occasionally, there is bleeding associated with it, but most...

So, you think you have a perianal abscess? It’s a common condition that we see and I’ll tell you more about it.   An abscess is a localized collection of infection (pus). It can occur anywhere, but near the anus is a common location.   The most common presentation is anorectal (butt) pain. It may be associated with some swelling. The pain typically comes on gradually over several days (not to be confused with the pain from a thrombosed hemorrhoid that comes on more acutely and is associated with a lump). You...

Rectal bleeding is one of the more common symptoms that a colorectal surgeon sees in the office. There are many different causes of blood in the stool; some, like hemorrhoids, are benign and are easily treated. Others, like colon and rectal cancer, are more worrisome and require different treatments. Most people become alarmed when they see blood in their stool and it is a worthwhile topic to discuss.   The most common reason for rectal bleeding is hemorrhoids. You may be thinking I don’t have hemorrhoids. So remember, internal hemorrhoids can cause...

Because newer treatments are available for fecal incontinence (accidental bowel leakage), I’m often asked about them. I am seeing more and more patients with fecal incontinence. Many patients have questions about what exactly is sacral nerve stimulation. It’s a relatively new procedure that has really changed many patients’ lives, so it’s worthwhile to discuss.   Sacral nerve stimulation (SNS) has been used for a number of years for urinary incontinence (urine leakage). Because many patients with urinary leakage also have bowel leakage, doctors started noticing that when SNS was done for urinary...

As a colon and rectal surgeon, one of the common issues that I see is colon cancer. Patients are taken quite off guard when they are diagnosed with colon cancer. So, I thought that it might be helpful to talk about what happens after someone is diagnosed with colon cancer (rectal cancer is different from colon cancer and I’ll talk about that in another post).   Everyone needs a colonoscopy, and for people who don’t have a family history of colon or rectal cancer, that should be done at age 50. That’s...

Last time, I talked about hemorrhoids and how many patients who think they have hemorrhoids actually have another problem. Today, I’ll talk about what those other problems might be.   Probably the most common thing that is confused with hemorrhoids is an anal fissure. The main way that I, as a colon and rectal surgeon, am able to determine that the problem is an anal fissure and not something else is by listening to my patients! I know you may not believe that. I don’t need a fancy X-ray or CT scan...

Last time, I talked about hemorrhoids and how many patients who think they have hemorrhoids actually have another problem. Today, I’ll talk about what those other problems might be.   Probably the most common thing that is confused with hemorrhoids is an anal fissure. The main way that I, as a colon and rectal surgeon, am able to determine that the problem is an anal fissure and not something else is by listening to my patients! I know you may not believe that. I don’t need a fancy X-ray or CT scan...

A very common question that I am asked is whether everyone with hemorrhoids needs surgery. And the truth of the matter is that only a minority of patients need surgery for hemorrhoids. Many times, I am actually able to treat hemorrhoids more effectively in the office than in the operating room. So, who can be treated in the office and who needs surgery for hemorrhoids?   First, we should talk about the difference between external and internal hemorrhoids. I’ve talked about this difference in another post as well. External hemorrhoids have pain...

I see so many patients in the office who think they have hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids are one of the most common problems that I, as a colon and rectal surgeon, see. However, many of the patients whom I see who think they have hemorrhoids actually have other problems, such as an anal fissure or anal fistula. So the question you are probably wondering is, “Do I have hemorrhoids?” Hemorrhoids can be divided into two main categories: Internal and external. Internal hemorrhoids cause bleeding (one of the more common causes of bright red...