What is hemorrhoid banding?
Hemorrhoids are veins in the tissues at the opening of the anus that become enlarged. They can cause pain, bleeding, and/or itching. A person who has hemorrhoids may also have clots forming in the hemorrhoid tissue. Your bowel may treat the clots like a bowel movement and try to push them out of your body.
Hemorrhoid banding is a procedure in which the doctor puts a tight band around the hemorrhoid to control bleeding. Then the doctor will either remove the blood clot or let it wither and heal on its own.
When is it used?
Hemorrhoid banding is one method of treating hemorrhoids. Examples of alternatives to this procedure are:
- To remove the hemorrhoids with a laser or with regular surgery.
- To use a fluid to harden the hemorrhoids.
- To freeze the hemorrhoids.
- To try anesthetic ointments and sitz baths.
- To choose not to have treatment, recognizing the risks of your condition.
You should ask your doctor about these choices.
How do I prepare for hemorrhoid banding?
Plan for your recovery and care following the operation. Follow instructions provided by the doctor.
What happens during the procedure?
You may need no anesthesia or you may receive a local anesthetic. A local anesthetic numbs part of your body while you remain awake. It should keep you from feeling pain.
The doctor will put an anoscope (a tubelike instrument for examining the lower rectum and anal canal) into your anus and expose the affected hemorrhoids. He or she will put a tight band around the enlarged vein and either cut the hemorrhoid open, remove the blood clot, and let the vein heal, or let the hemorrhoid dry up and fall off.
What happens after the procedure?
You will need to take sitz baths, use stool softeners, and apply ointments to the area. Avoid all heavy lifting for 2 or 3 weeks. You may return to work in a few days or weeks, depending on the type of work you do. You also may have trouble passing urine and controlling gas and bowel movements for a few days after this operation.
Ask your doctor what other steps you should take and when you should come back for a checkup.
What are the benefits of this procedure?
You will be relieved of itching, painful, and bleeding hemorrhoids.
What are the risks associated with this procedure?
- A local anesthetic may not numb the area quite enough and you may feel some minor discomfort. Also, in rare cases, you may have an allergic reaction to the drug used in this type of anesthesia.
- You may have trouble urinating.
- The wound may scar and leave a smaller opening in the rectum, making it difficult to have bowel movements.
- The remaining hemorrhoids may become inflamed.
- The hemorrhoids may recur.
- There is a risk of infection and bleeding.
You should ask your doctor how these risks apply to you.
When should I call the doctor?
Call the doctor immediately if:
- You begin to bleed a lot.
- You develop worsening pain in the area.
- You develop a fever.
- You are unable to urinate or have bowel movements.
Call the doctor during office hours if:
- You have questions about the procedure or its results.
- You want to make another appointment.
Find a Brooklyn Gastroenterologist at Practice Brooklyn Gastroenterology and Endoscopy