4 Common Questions About Internal Hemorrhoid Treatment

Which internal hemorrhoid treatment is the right choice? You're not sure if an at-home remedy will stop your symptoms—or if you will need something more. If you have hemorrhoid pain, discomfort, or other signs of this common issue, take a look at what you need to know about your treatment options.

Do You Have Hemorrhoids?

You need a diagnosis before you can treat hemorrhoids. Internal hemorrhoids may have very few symptoms and may not even cause you pain. If you have a noticeable bump or swelling around the exterior anal region, it's more likely that you have external hemorrhoids (and not the internal type). External hemorrhoid care can differ from internal treatment options. This makes it important to visit the doctor before you take the next steps. 

Some people with internal hemorrhoids may have discomfort, anal or rectal irritation, or notice small amounts of blood during bowel movements. Even though your symptoms may not seem serious, never ignore anal irritation or rectal bleeding. 

Do You Need To Treat Internal Hemorrhoids?

The answer to this question depends on the size of the hemorrhoids, your symptoms, and your overall health. Small, painless, symptom-free hemorrhoids may not require treatment. A hemorrhoid clinical care specialist can evaluate the issue and help you to decide if a wait-and-see approach is the best option. But if the hemorrhoids are painful or bleed or if the doctor feels intervention is necessary, you will need to decide between at-home or clinic-based care.

Is Surgery Necessary for Internal Hemorrhoids?

Surgical and minimally-invasive procedures can stop discomfort and help the area to heal. But a trip to the OR isn't always necessary. Talk to the doctor about at-home options for mild hemorrhoids, such as a high-fiber diet, sitz baths, and over-the-counter pain relievers. If these haven't worked in the past or the doctor feels your situation warrants a different approach, they will suggest other options. 

Rubber band ligation, laser or infrared coagulation, and cryosurgery are options to explore. These procedures are done either in an OR or in the doctor's office. A prolapsed or protruding hemorrhoid may require a hemorrhoidectomy or stapling. Unlike laser or infrared coagulation (or other in-office treatments), the more invasive surgical options typically require anesthesia. This allows you to rest during the procedure, making it painless. 

Can Internal Hemorrhoids Come Back?

Yes, hemorrhoids can return—whether you choose an at-home treatment, wait-and-see approach, minimally-invasive procedure, or full surgery. To reduce the risks of a recurrence, stay hydrated, eat a fiber-rich diet that's free of processed foods, and get plenty of physical activity. 

Contact your doctor to learn more about internal hemorrhoid treatment options.