Can any of the salves, suppositories or creams applied to the rectum make the hemorrhoids go away?
Most creams or suppositories used in the treatment of hemorrhoids are directed at reducing the pain and itching symptoms.
They do not make the dilated veins go away but merely give you relief until the precipitating cause is eliminated and the body heals them itself.
The most effective creams contain hydrocortisone (e.g., Anusol-HC®[2.5%]) or some other steroid. These are only available by prescription although there are preparations with low doses of steroids (1% hydrocortisone) that do not require prescription.
Medicated pads containing witch hazel (Tucks®) is a popular over-the-counter treatment especially for the itching, burning and skin irritation. Another popular non prescription medication is Preparation H® which contains phenylephrine, 0.25%, a vasoconstrictor that makes the veins smaller.
There are some natural, herbal creams that may also be effective.
How does a doctor treat hemorrhoids?
Physicians will advise you of all of the preventive and home treatment modalities as listed above. In addition, they may prescribe various creams or suppositories containing pharmaceutical ingredients that not only relieve the pain (usually using steroids), but also that have direct action on the dilated veins.
Various components have been reported such as nitroglycerin paste (2), calcium dobesilate with steroid and local anesthetic (3) and even a standardized leech extract (4). The mainstay of treatment however is a topical preparation usually containing steroid and local anesthetic.
Surgical treatment is usually reserved for large hemorrhoids, chronic anal fissures or perirectal abscesses (5). Surgical treatment can include banding of the veins, surgical excision, laser or electrocautery and even injection of the veins with sclerosing agents that scar shut the hemorrhoid.
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