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Almost all people have heard of hemorrhoids and many have actually suffered from this common and often embarrassing condition. But how many people know exactly what hemorrhoids are and the symptoms that indicate there presence. Many people may not realize exactly what a hemorrhoid is, the fact that there is actually more then one kind of hemorrhoid, and that symptoms vary for each type. It is the goal of this article to explain the different types of hemorrhoids and the symptoms you may expect for each type.

Hemorrhoids, also referred to as piles, are swollen veins in the anal and rectal region. These inflamed veins, depending on the location can cause pain, especially while sitting or having a bowel movement, itching, bleeding, and you may be able to feel a lump in the area around the anus. If you experience pain, it can range from a mild discomfort to extreme. If you notice blood, it will be bright red because it is blood that is very close to the surface of the skin and highly oxygenated. While normal bleeding from hemorrhoids is not considered dangerous, you should be concerned if there is an excessive amount of blood as this may indicate problems other then hemorrhoids. To further understand the symptoms, we need to look at the two different kinds of hemorrhoids.

As already stated, hemorrhoids are where the veins in the rectal area get inflamed and swollen. There are actually two sets of veins that drain blood from the rectal area and the first set we are going to talk about are the internal veins that are inside the anus. When these internal veins become inflamed a condition known as internal hemorrhoids develops. Because the internal veins inside the anus do not have nerve endings, they normally create no pain unless the condition becomes severe. Normally the only symptom you will notice with internal hemorrhoids is bright red blood when having a bowel movement and you will not normally be able to feel a lump in the area. Internal hemorrhoids can, however, develop into a condition that is painful.

A prolapsed hemorrhoid is where an internal hemorrhoid extends outside the anus and becomes more inflamed and has increased swelling. Normally, this type of hemorrhoid can be gently pushed back up inside the anus but if not done soon enough, it can swell to the point where it develops into a serious condition called an entrapped hemorrhoid. This condition can be both serious and very painful as the hemorrhoid is now trapped outside the anus and no longer receives any blood supply. If this condition persists, the hemorrhoid will die and become infected making it possible for the infection to spread throughout the body and can make the hemorrhoid sufferer very ill. If this condition develops, it is time to see a doctor right away. The other type of hemorrhoid that someone may experience is an external hemorrhoid.

An external hemorrhoid is where the veins that run outside the anus become inflamed and swollen. These hemorrhoids can be felt as a lump and are the type that are normally associated with pain, burning, and itching. This type of hemorrhoid will also cause bleeding and if left untreated can develop into what is called thrombosed hemorrhoid where a blood clot is formed. Once the hemorrhoid clots, the pressure will increase and the pain can become severe. As with the case of an entrapped hemorrhoid, a thrombosed hemorrhoid will also require you to see your doctor so the blood clot can be cut away and the pressure relieved.

I hope this article has given you some perspective about what hemorrhoids are and what symptoms to expect. If caught early enough there are several different treatments available to treat the symptoms and cure the hemorrhoids. But as Ive already stated, please be aware that excessive bleeding from the rectal area may be a more serious condition then hemorrhoids such as anal or colon cancer. If you have any reason to think that your symptoms are more then hemorrhoidal the please see a doctor right away.