• About Piles

What are Haemorrhoids and how are they caused?

Haemorrhoids, commonly known as ‘piles’, are associated with increased pressure in the blood vessels in and around the anus. This can cause the blood vessels to become swollen and inflamed.

80% of us will experience the pain and discomfort of piles at some point in our lives and approximations suggest that several hundred thousand patients are suffering in the UK at any one time.

Multiple causes of haemorrhoids exist.

  • Constipation, resulting in excessive straining on the toilet

  • Being overweight or obese, increasing pressure on the vascular system in general

  • Age where the body’s supporting tissues weaken, increasing haemorrhoid risk

  • Pregnancy creating increased pressure on the pelvic blood vessels

  • Poor diet through insufficient fibre

  • Regularly lifting heavy objects

  • A persistent cough or repeated vomiting

  • Sitting down for long periods of time

  • Family history

4 Clinical Grades of Haemorrhoid

Haemorrhoids are clinically graded by colorectal specialists on a scale from 1-4 depending on severity and symptoms.

Traditionally, each grade of haemorrhoid has required its own specific treatment (see below), but all traditional treatments come with down-sides and only limited success.

The Rafaelo Procedure treats ALL 4 GRADES of internal haemorrhoid, quickly, safely, permanently and relatively painlessly compared to other surgical options.

Traditional Treatment Options & Their Limitations

Over the Counter Creams & LotionsTopical application of OTC creams to reduce itchiness and swelling.
– Temporary solution only
– Suitable for mild conditions
– Frequent recurrence
BandingRubber bands used to cut off blood supply.– Often painful
– Requires repeat treatment
– Frequent recurrence
Injection SclerotherapyA chemical is injected to harden the tissue to create a scar.– Becoming decreasingly popular
ElectrotherapyElectrical currents are passed through the haemorrhoid causing it to cauterise.
– Painful technique
– Requires several applications
– Mixed results
Haemorrhoid is ‘stitched’ under general anaesthetic (in theatre) to cut off the blood supply.
– Painful
– Requires general anaesthetic
– Risk of surgical complications
– Mixed results
– Time off work (several days)
Staple Haemorrhoidectomy (Lungo)
Carried out under general anaesthetic (in theatre) and, as its name suggests, involves the stapling of the haemorrhoid to reduce its blood flow.
– Painful
– Risk of surgical complications
– Requires general anaesthetic
– Time off work (2-3 weeks)
Full Surgery Haemorrhoidectomy
Carried out under general anaesthetic (in theatre) to remove the haemorrhoid completely.
– Painful
– Requires general anaesthetic
– Risk of surgical complications
– Mixed results
– Time off work (2-3 weeks)

The Rafaelo Procedure is the only safe, relatively painless treatment for all 4 grades of internal haemorrhoid available in the UK today.

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