Exactly what are hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are normal veins that are located at the opening of the rectum and that over a period of time, become dilated and stretched and often are associated with bleeding, rectal pain and rectal itching. The blood in the vein can become clotted causing severe discomfort that requires immediate attention. Most of the time, hemorrhoids do not need to be removed surgically nor treated with cautery lasers or other invasive treatments. The most effective treatment is sitz baths and increasing fiber in the diet. The one thing to remember is that not all rectal bleeding comes from hemorrhoids and frequently further investigation is important particularly after the age of 40.