Minimally Invasive Treatment for Enlarged Hemorrhoids: Embolization
Enlarged hemorrhoids, also known as piles, can be painful and uncomfortable. However, there are treatment options available that can provide relief without the need for invasive surgery. One such option is hemorrhoid embolization.
Hemorrhoid embolization is a safe and effective procedure that reduces the blood flow to the hemorrhoids, causing them to shrink and symptoms to lessen. A specially trained interventional radiologist performs this procedure. A tiny catheter is inserted into an artery in the patient’s hip. Using real-time imaging, the physician directs the catheter through the artery and releases tiny particles, the size of grains of sand, into the blood vessels feeding the hemorrhoid, cutting off their blood supply.
The procedure is minimally invasive, meaning it does not involve surgery, stitches or general anesthesia. Most patients experience minimal pain and can return to their normal activities within a few days. Studies have shown that hemorrhoid embolization results in less pain during recovery compared to conventional surgical treatments, making it a viable alternative for those seeking relief from hemorrhoid symptoms.
Benefits of Hemorrhoid Embolization
Hemorrhoid embolization offers several benefits compared to more invasive surgical procedures. These include:
Minimally invasive:Hemorrhoid embolization is a minimally invasive procedure, meaning it typically requires only one small incision and does not involve any large cuts or stitches.
Quick recovery time: With hemorrhoid embolization, patients can typically return to their regular activities within just a few days.
Safe and effective: This procedure is safe and highly effective in treating enlarged hemorrhoids.
Who Is a Candidate for Hemorrhoid Embolization?
Hemorrhoid embolization is a great option for those suffering from enlarged hemorrhoids. This procedure is typically recommended for those with second- or third-degree hemorrhoids that have not responded to other treatment options, such as lifestyle changes and medications. Be sure to consult your doctor to see if hemorrhoid embolization is right for you.
Preparing For Hemorrhoid Embolization
Prior to the procedure, your doctor will likely perform a physical exam and discuss any medications you are taking. You may also be asked to stop taking certain medications or supplements before the procedure. Additionally, you should not eat or drink anything after midnight the night before the procedure.
What to Expect During Hemorrhoid Embolization
Hemorrhoid embolization is typically performed in an outpatient setting. You will likely be asked to wear a gown and lie on your back during the procedure. Anesthesia will then be administered — either locally or through IV sedation — to ensure you are comfortable throughout the procedure.
During the procedure, a thin tube called a catheter will be inserted into a major artery in your groin. The catheter will then be guided to the vessels that supply blood to the hemorrhoids, where a small amount of material (known as an embolic agent) will be injected. This embolic agent blocks off these vessels and reduces their size, thus shrinking the hemorrhoid.
The entire procedure typically takes about 30-60 minutes. Afterward, you can typically go home the same day.
What to Expect After Hemorrhoid Embolization
In the days following the procedure, it is important to take care of yourself and follow your doctor’s instructions for a smooth recovery. This may include taking medications as prescribed and avoiding strenuous physical activities or lifting heavy objects. Most patients can return to their normal activities within a few days after the procedure.
Hemorrhoid Embolization at Texas Vein & Wellness Institute
The TXVWI team is here to help get you back to your favorite activities and feel like yourself again. Request an appointment today to learn more about what hemorrhoid embolization can look like for you.
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