As has been discussed in the previous article ‘Home Remedies for Piles After Delivery‘, piles usually regress by themselves following pregnancy. However, sometimes this may not occur and piles may persist causing problems to the patient.
This persistence of piles after pregnancy and delivery is called postpartum hemorrhoids.
The Problems With Postpartum Hemorrhoids
The problem with postpartum hemorrhoids is that they can tend to become thrombosed. This means that the blood within them can clot making the piles rather painful and uncomfortable.
Bleeding can persist and if severe can cause anemia making the patient feel tired all the time. This is not good for the mother or for the child.
But the presence of piles and it’s symptoms by itself are not the main problem. If a woman gets pregnant again, the piles can in fact get a lot worse and some form of treatment may be required on an urgent basis.
Pregnancy also increases the level of the hormone progesterone in the blood which can slow down bowel movements and result in constipation. As it is already discussed, constipation results in excessive bowel straining which can in turn cause hemorrhoids.
Is There a Cause For Concern?
As is the case with most hemorrhoids, many a time the symptoms are rather mild and not that distressing. However, if they do get worse, patients can experience great degree of pain and discomfort to a point where it affects their activities of daily living.
The piles may become a distraction to the mother while they should be concentrating on looking after their child. Piles can also prolapse out of the anal opening and become thrombosed which can only worsen this condition.
So in a nutshell, there can be cause for concern if the condition gets worse.
How To Treat Postpartum Hemorrhoids
The management of postpartum hemorrhoids is similar to hemorrhoids that may occur during pregnancy or in any patient for that matter. Consuming a high-fibre diet allows for easy bowel motions and reduced straining.
Ice packs may help ease the pain and reduce any inflammation around the area. Warm baths may also help by increasing the blood supply to the area as well.
Maintaining good anal hygiene is also important. It is recommended that following each bowel movement, the area is cleaned gently but thoroughly using either water or a moistened paper towel or tissue instead of dry toilet paper.
In case the pain is bad, painkillers can be taken which can help reduce pain and inflammation. If required, topical anesthetic creams can also be applied to the area.
These choices of treatment are the ones that patients can observe at home by themselves. Of course if the symptoms do not subside, more advanced treatment options may need to be performed, such as
This decision of course would be made by the treating physician following discussions with the patient.