Zocdoc Answers

Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors

"Are there different types of hemorrhoids?"

ZocdocAnswersAre there different types of hemorrhoids?


I'm only 25, but I'm pretty sure I have hemorrhoids. But on the other hand, it doesn't seem like I have a lot of the classic symptoms of hemorrhoids. Are there several different type of hemorrhoids?


Hemorrhoids are a very common health concern, affecting an estimated 10 million people in the United States alone. However, as with any health concern, diagnosis and treatment for hemorrhoids is best provided by seeking care from a physician. A primary care doctor or gastroenterologist can help diagnose and treat hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids--or enlarged rectal veins--can be divided into two general categories. Internal hemorrhoids are found inside the anal canal and commonly cause painless bleeding with bowel movements. However, they can sometimes cause perianal itching or irritation. Large hemorrhoids can also prolapse or protrude through the anus or even become twisted, causing acute pain. External hemorrhoids are found on the outside of the anal area and can cause painful bleeding with bowel movements. External hemorrhoids can also cause problems with personal hygiene because of excess or stretched skin in the anal area. Hemorrhoids are more common in pregnant women and in patients with ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease than the rest of the population. However, irritation, pain, or bleeding from the rectal area can also be associated with many other conditions including anal fissures; an area of viral or bacterial infection; an abscess; an anal fistula; or anal warts. It is not possible to diagnose hemorrhoids without an evaluation by a physician. Seeking medical care also helps identify and exclude any other causes of anal pain or bleeding.

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.