The expansion of the radicle rectal veins within the anal canal are know as piles. Medically, piles are also known as hemorrhoids. Arteries are usually pretty strong compared to veins. Veins are weak in comparison due to their thin walls and when there is to much pressure in the veins, there is pain or discomfort. There are three rectal veins: inferior middle and superior. Any obstructions or increase of pressure in these veins can cause piles.
Depending upon the condition of the person, there are two types of piles.
1) Internal piles (Internal Hemorrhoids).
2) External piles (External Hemorrhoids).
1) Internal piles (Internal Hemorrhoids):
They are inside the anal canal and internal to the anal orifice. They are covered by a mucous membrane and are purple or red in colour. These internal piles are usually painless.
2) External piles (External Hemorrhoids):
External piles are seen outside of the anal opening and are covered by skin. They are brown or black in colour. This type of external piles are usually very painful due to the many nerve endings in the surrounding area.
Sometimes external and internal piles occur in same person at the same time.
Some reasons why some people get piles:
1) It is common in people who experience chronic constipation. People who strain a lot to have a bowl movement, will usually suffer from internal or external piles, sooner or later. Cure your irregular bowel movements and you have a good chance of avoiding piles.
2) Cancerous lesions in the rectum can obstruct blood flow and result in piles.
3) Some women get piles during their pregnancy due to the compression of rectal veins by the uterus.
4) Piles is common in those who eat excess amounts of chicken, prawns, spicy foods, etc. Those who eat more vegetables and fibrous food are rarely get piles.
5) It is a hereditary disease.
6) Piles only occur in animals that maintain an erect posture. This is due to congestion of blood in the rectal veins due to the effects of gravity.
Symptoms and Signs of piles:
1) In some cases there will be a discharge of puss with itching around the anal opening.
2) Pain – Pain is common when you have external piles, which will worsen while you strain to defecate.
3) Bleeding – Blood will splash the toilet bowl when you try to have a bowel movement. The bleeding may be quite abundant at times. Try not to be alarmed if this happens to you.
4) Protruding bunch of muscles / skin – With external piles the swelling can be felt around the anal opening. In the case of internal piles, they might not be felt at the beginning. When the disease worsens, the internal piles will exit during bowel movement and will go retreat back inside once you have finished. As the condition worsens, the protruded internal piles will not retreat back in to the anus.
Some Complications of Piles:
1) Gangrene: Here the tissues in the piles and nearby skin die due to lack of the blood supply.
2) Fibrosis: Here the piles become fibrosed with hardening of the anal orifice.
3) Infection: The infection can spread to the deep veins resulting in septicaemia.
4) Suppuration: When the piles suppurate, it can produce an abscess with the discharge of puss.
5) Thrombosis: Here the blood inside the piles will form clots and can obstruct the blood flow.