A hemorrhoid is a swollen vein or group of veins located in and around the anus, typically caused by excess pressure. There are two kinds:
- Internal hemorrhoids – within the lining of the anus and lower rectum
- External hemorrhoids – forming under the skin of the anus
Hemorrhoid banding, or ligation, is a common treatment for internal hemorrhoids. This outpatient procedure involves placing rubber bands or rings around the hemorrhoid(s), thus cutting off blood supply to the veins until they shrink.
The gastroenterologist may evaluate your hemorrhoids with the assistance of an anoscope for better visualization. Looking through the tube, the doctor has a clear view of the rectum and can locate the hemorrhoid(s).
A small tool, called a band ligator, is passed through the anus, and a band is placed at the base of the hemorrhoid to constrict blood flow.
The patient should bring a list of all current medications.