Running with Hemorrhoids [Those irritating, painful, often bloody annoyances that can make marathon running less enjoyable.]

What do Beijing, Berlin, Boston, Chicago, Dubai, Gold Coast, London, NYC, Prague, and Tokyo have in common? In addition to being home to the world’s top 10 marathons, they’re home to hemorrhoids….hundreds and hundreds of hemorrhoids.

Running with hemorrhoids can be a painful experience for some. Understanding what hemorrhoids are, and why running can increase your chances of getting them can help you find a solution that won’t keep you away from the finish line.

Important message to all sneaker jocks out there: Running in itself does not cause hemorrhoids.

What are hemorrhoids? They are cushions of vascular tissue in the anal canal, and can be very painful when they flare up. There are two kinds of hemorrhoids—internal and external. Few runners are aware that around 50 percent of adults have hemorrhoid symptoms. They can hurt, bleed, itch, and oftentimes are especially irritating for athletes. Although hemorrhoids are not generally life threatening, you should still see a colon & rectal specialist if you are experiencing bleeding to rule out serious illness, such as colon cancer.

Colon Cancer is the #2 cancer killer, yet it’s preventable.

What causes runners to have hemorrhoid symptoms? Increased pressure and engorgement of hemorrhoids can be the culprit. Marathon running stresses the gastrointestinal system, and runners often experience flatulence, runners’ diarrhea, excessive sweating, and other aggravations. Let’s be clear: running does not cause hemorrhoids. However, several dynamics associated with long distance running may trigger hemorrhoid symptoms—constipation is common with marathoners who tend to skimp on water consumption. This creates hard stool that makes straining in the bathroom a problem—hard stool puts pressure on the hemorrhoids during bowel movements and inflames this tissue.

Exercise actually offers therapeutic value to hemorrhoid sufferers because it increases intestinal muscle contractions. This can help promote regular, easier bowel movements. Exercise can also help you lose weight that may be contributing to your hemorrhoid symptoms.

If hemorrhoids are forcing you to consider hanging up your running shoes, consider staying better hydrated, increasing the fiber in your diet, and sitting in a warm bath several times daily.

Make an appointment with a board certified colon & rectal surgeon if these simple remedies don’t bring relief. They may suggest a painless rubber banding procedure that takes less than 10 minutes in the office. People with severe cases of hemorrhoids should consult their doctor before jogging and running to avoid a worsened condition, such as prolapse.


www.ColoradoColon.com

What’s that Pain in My Butt? [It may be something other than sciatica if it’s in your anal area or tailbone]

Hemorrhoids are a common culprit. They can be either inside or outside your rectum, and they really hurt when they’re angry!

Some say Napoleon Bonaparte was forced to ride side saddle because of hemorrhoids.

Most don’t know that hemorrhoids are normal, and that we have them from birth. They exist to provide anal tone and cushion the anal sphincter muscle. During bowel movements, the hemorrhoidal veins pad and protect our anal openings. It’s only when hemorrhoids become swollen—itch, hurt, and bleed—that they become a problem. The most common symptom is bright red blood—on your stool, toilet paper, or in the toilet bowl. Hemorrhoids aren’t usually life threatening and can go away. Most of the time they return, and the symptoms are often worse than before. It’s important to see your doctor to rule out conditions that have similar symptoms, such as colon cancer. That pain might be more than just your hemorrhoids.

About 89% of us will be bothered by hemorrhoids at some time in our lives. Runners, cyclists, weight lifters, construction workers, people who sit for prolonged times, people with diabetes, wheelchair bound individuals, and women who are pregnant or have given birth, are likely to suffer the irritation and pain of hemorrhoids…almost all of us are prone to hemorrhoids.

Fortunately, hemorrhoids are most often easy to treat.

Today there’s painless hemorrhoid removal that’s done in our office.

Rubber banding is a widely used, cost effective technique for eliminating internal hemorrhoids. Dr. Perryman uses a special instrument that simply fits a rubber band over the hemorrhoid tissue, which cuts off blood flow to it. About a week later it easily falls off and is eliminated during a bowel movement. The procedure itself takes less than 5 minutes.

Hemorrhoids can also be external.

External thrombosed hemorrhoids can be extremely painful. They are best examined by a proctologist or board-certified colon & rectal surgeon within the first few days symptoms appear. Symptoms often include painful swelling and a lump outside the anus. This is caused by a blood clot that forms inside the external hemorrhoid.

Dr. Perryman will carefully examine the area, and make medical determination whether to remove it through simple excision in the office. Most often this relieves pain from swelling instantly. Other recommendations may include: increasing dietary fiber, soothing sitz baths, and no straining or prolonged sitting on the toilet. Removing a thrombosed external hemorrhoid in the office only takes 10 minutes.

Tailbone pain can also be associated with hemorrhoids. That’s because muscles and bones are full of pain nerves down there. When you’re suffering from the pain of hemorrhoids, it can translate into pain and spasms throughout that area of your body. Be sure to be evaluated by a colon & rectal surgeon to be sure that nothing else is causing the pain.

Board certified colon & rectal surgeons are highly specialized and have many years of extensive training. They are experts in diagnosing and treating all problems related to the colon, rectum and anus.

Contact Dr. Lisa A. Perryman, FACS, FASCRS, board certified colon & rectal surgeon in Denver,
at (303)840-8822, or request a confidential appointment at www.ColoradoColon.com.

Infrared Coagulation

Q&A: Regarding Infrared Coagulation (IRC)

What is Infrared Coagulation? IRC is a non-surgical hemorrhoid treatment that can be performed in the office without anesthesia. It is a technique used to shrink internal hemorrhoid tissue by applying a controlled amount of infrared energy to the hemorrhoid.

How does it work? IRC works by coagulating the vessels that provide the hemorrhoid with blood. This causes the hemorrhoid tissue to shrink back.

Does Dr. Perryman have experience performing IRC? Dr. Perryman does perform IRC in the office as well as other non-surgical treatments of hemorrhoids such as rubber band ligation (RBL), sclerotherapy, and medical management.

Is it painful? Many patients report feeling a heat sensation but do not feel pain. Patients can return to work the same day.

Is IRC an effective treatment? IRC has been shown to be an effective treatment in many patients. However, studies have shown that RBL demonstrates a greater long term efficacy. It is thought that this is because RBL causes the hemorrhoid tissue to die, where IRC creates a small burn that results in minimal tissue injury.

 

Dr. Perryman would be happy to further discuss treatment options with you.

Do I need a Colorectal Surgeon or a Gastroenterologist?

What is the difference between a colorectal surgeon and a gastroenterologist? This is a very common question that we receive and often patients are unsure of which field is appropriate for their needs. Although these fields overlap in some areas, the specialties are actually very different in the conditions they treat and their method of training. In order to address this issue, we have added some useful information to decide which type of physician treats your condition.

A Colorectal Surgeon, formerly known as a proctologist, is a general surgeon who has undergone further training in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the colon, rectum and anus. Colon and rectal surgeons are experts in the surgical and non-surgical treatment of colon and rectal problems. Colon and rectal surgeons treat benign and malignant conditions, perform routine colon screening examinations and surgically treat problems when necessary.

A colorectal surgeon will evaluate, diagnose and treat the following symptoms and conditions:

Anal Abscess/Fistula Anal Cancer Anal Fissure
Anal Pain Anal Warts Bowel Incontinence
Colorectal Cancer Constipation Crohn’s Disease
Diverticular Disease Hemorrhoids Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction Pilonidal Disease Pruritus Ani
Rectal Prolapse Rectocele Ulcerative Colitis

A gastroenterologist is a doctor who has completed initial training in internal medicine and further training in gastroenterology. Gastroenterologists do not operate on patients. A gastroenterologist specializes in diseases of the digestive system (gastrointestinal (GI) tract). Gastroenterologists diagnose and treat many conditions that affect the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine (colon), and biliary system (e.g., liver, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts).

 

 

Rectal Bleeding

The most common misconception about rectal bleeding is that it is coming from hemorrhoids.

Hemorrhoids can be the cause of rectal bleeding; however, there are many other conditions that can cause rectal bleeding. These conditions include but are not limited to, colon cancer/rectal cancer, anal fissures, constipation, polyp(s), and Inflammatory Bowel Disease, such as Crohn’s and Ulcerative colitis. Please visit this link to see all causes of rectal bleeding http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/rectal-bleeding/MY00573/DSECTION=causes.

To determine the source of rectal bleeding, an anorectal exam should be performed by a qualified provider as well as a colonoscopy. Doing both of these procedures will allow Dr. Perryman to diagnose the source of the bleeding and determine treatment.