What to Expect after a Hemorrhoidectomy

What to expect after a hemorrhoidectomy will be far from pleasant but you have to keep on reminding yourself that you got to this stage because you were already suffering bouts of pain on a daily basis due to your hemorrhoids and so that was what lead you to opt for the operation! 

The most noticeable difference to any other operation is that one hour prior to your pre-med and the actual operation you will be given a very potent suppository which within less than twenty minutes will have the almighty effect of making you rush to the bathroom in order to empty the whole of your gastrointestinal tract!  This of course has to be done in order to make things more pleasant for your surgeon!

When you wake up from your operation you will usually find that you have a saline drip attached to your hand and whether you notice it at first or not, due to your grogginess from the anaesthetic, you will also have had some gauze stuffed up your anus. I know that it sounds awful saying it like this but I really can’t find a more poetic way of describing it !

For this sort of operation the pain killer that is normally used, for the first few days in hospital, is a morphine injection every eight hours as the pain suffered by the patient is quite excruciating. I was told that during the war when medicine was scarce the medics always tried to make sure that they at least kept aside some morphine for hemorrhoid patients.  Though after about the third day they will wean you onto tablet pain killers which you may also take once you get home.

You will be allowed to eat and drink as soon as you feel like it after the operation but the eating part is not yet advisable. Drink as much as you can in order to provoke your water channels to work again and also to liquefy any food remnants in your intestinal tract but it is not a good idea to eat until you have had the gauze, which they packed into your rectum, removed and which usually has to remain in place for at least 12 hours.

Some patients have been known to be successful in removing the gauze themselves by sitting in a warm bath and tugging gently at the outer cords but if this does not work the gauze will unfortunately have to be removed by your surgeon or nurse who will do so with one quick tug which is painful to say the least but if it’s any consolation it only lasts five seconds and then it’s over! You will have to wear a sanitary towel after this episode as it’s very likely that you will bleed some due to this aggressive procedure!

In most hospitals they suggest you drink an orange flavoured linseed gel (along with your antibiotics), right after the operation, and at least twice a day from then onwards which will ensure that your stools stay soft and so thus making them less painful during their transition. To also make their transition smoother, easier and less painful it is a good idea to place your feet on a foot stool while you are in the bathroom. Doing this makes your body resemble the squatting position which native Africans adopt when having to do the same function and it is confirmed that Africans hardly ever suffer from hemorrhoids.

You will most probably be allowed to leave hospital about five or six days after the operation and once home it will be very welcoming to be able to have a rubber ring to sit on at all times. Have warm baths two or three times a day or warm douches in bidets. Keep on taking your pain killers, which may be codeine tablets or similar, for another two weeks but after that time the pain should subside quite a lot to being totally bearable.

And most important from now on is to look after yourself so that you never find yourself in this dilemma ever again! Drink lots of water, eat food that contains fibre, include plenty of exercise in your daily routine, pay a lot of attention to hygeine and lubrication and continue to place your feet up on a stool so that hopefully you will never have to suffer from hemorrhoids (or piles as they are sometimes referred to) ever again!).

Although on a lighter note, nowadays, unless the case is very severe, it is usually no longer necessary to have a hemorrhoidectomy in order to cure this ailment as it can all be done by laser which is very much more simple and less painful to say the least!