Choosing the right physician for your hemorrhoid treatment is an important decision. Not only do you need someone skilled and well-trained, but you need someone who can make you feel comfortable during exams and procedures. Most importantly, you need a doctor who can diagnose and treat your condition, taking into consideration your unique needs.
Some of the things to keep in mind when choosing a proctologist or surgeon for your hemorrhoid treatment include:
Choose a Hemorrhoid Specialist
If your hemorrhoids respond to a change in diet and over-the-counter treatments, your primary care physician will probably have enough experience in treating the annoying condition to ensure you have the information you need to heal quickly. If the hemorrhoids don’t respond to this type of conservative treatment though, you will want to consider talking to a specialist about your options.
A proctologist, sometimes known as a colon and rectal specialist, deals with hemorrhoids every day. Thanks to their training and experience, they can diagnose your condition, grade, and treat your hemorrhoids more effectively. They can also often offer more effective treatments to stop rectal bleeding and shrink inflamed hemorrhoidal tissues, often based on the latest research. These treatments are usually less invasive and are not as painful as conventional treatments.
If your condition requires surgery, you will definitely want to consult with a colon and rectal surgeon. General surgeons may only do a few hemorrhoidectomies a year, while a specialist may do many each week. The learning curve, especially when it comes to cutting-edge techniques, is steep. A general surgeon may not get enough practice to be competent at performing these specialized procedures, in some cases.
Experience Is Key
If you hope to pursue a less invasive option than a traditional open hemorrhoidectomy, choosing a specialist with experience performing these cutting-edge procedures is key. While PPH is a minimally invasive procedure for hemorrhoids, it requires a high level of skill and experience to perform properly and minimize the risk of complications.
For example, our surgeons perform Procedure for Prolapse and Hemorrhoids, or PPH, on a regular basis. Dr. Gary Hoffman not only conducted research that proves the advantages of this procedure over a more traditional hemorrhoidectomy, he also continues to work on further streamlining the procedure and advancing the instrumentation used.
Even if you do not end up undergoing PPH, you want a doctor who has the experience to understand the best options based on your unique symptoms. When a doctor does not see a condition regularly, they have a much higher risk of misdiagnosis, prescribing the wrong treatment, or missing warning signs of complications.
A colorectal surgeon will have extensive experience with hemorrhoids, as is required for them to obtain board certification. This means you get a higher level of care for your condition, from routine screenings to diagnosis to in-office treatments to surgery, when necessary.
Find a Good Doctor
Not only do you want to find an experienced doctor, you want to find a good doctor. In many cases, the personality of a colon and rectal surgeon and how comfortable they make discussing these topics is as important as their training.
While colon and rectal surgeons have advanced training in diagnosing and treating hemorrhoids and other colorectal issues, they also need to have a bedside manner that helps you relax and feel at ease explaining your symptoms. They need to make it as easy as possible on you to undergo routine screenings, as well as non-surgical and surgical treatments.
We recommend starting by asking your friends and family for a recommendation. You doctor may also have good advice about specialists. Lastly, keep researching online. Read reviews and learn more about individual physicians and practices through their websites.
Talk to Us to Learn More
At Los Angeles Colon & Rectal Surgical Associates, our surgeons pioneered the use of less invasive hemorrhoid treatments that significantly reduce postoperative pain. We focus on using the latest advances to effectively treat hemorrhoids and other perirectal and perianal conditions. We also offer preventative and diagnostic support, in additional to routine screenings. Call (310)273-2310 today to schedule your confidential consultation.