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Firstly, I am at day 8 of my operation. I decided that it was now time to pass on my experiences with this operation up to this point.

I went with the title as I hope to pass on a few things that got to me where I am now. The "Dummies guide to Hemorrhoidectomy" is this post. If you have just had or more importantly about to have this operation, I hope that every bit of this info serves you well. This information, while some of it mine, most of which you will find scattered throughout this wonderful forum. And without this forum, I had would have suffered a lot of unnecessary pain and suffering.

Who am I? I'm a lazy male that through anti-depressants had some mean bouts of constipation over the years. I created 1 external large hemorrhoid through years of straining. Over the last year and half, I created a 2nd large external hemorrhoid that created both misery and pain. Life was uncomfortable, i feared going to the toilet, i feared what happened afterwards, I feared been out and having this all happen! What kind of life is that?

Its around that point I went looking for answers, finally hitting this forum. GOLD !!! People who know what I'm going through, others who are now where I want to be. After much reading, I was extremely scared of this operation. The pain, the complications... the possible fallout. Life was bearable, but the pain I've heard others going through was totally scaring me out of wits!

Okay - I decided I was going to talk to my doctor about this again and get him to refer me to somebody who does this. I wanted to talk about it. I got a referral to a guy who was 15 minutes away and through a conversation with him, he said i was going to have lot of pain to begin with, but its straight forward. There was that word again! PAIN! It scared me off for 6 months after talking to him about it.

Life got more miserable due to my bowels, and the pain was terrible. Either way, I reached the cross roads.


My first bit of advice: make the commitment, and stick to it.

I went back and spoke to him again, I asked more questions. I went in the first time thinking I was going to get band surgery. He told me I had grade III & IV hemorrhoids and they were not an option. I had to have a Hemorrhoidectomy. Surgery was booked a month away.

Now I would have to wait. But I didn't do that. I went back over posts and studied the experiences of others.

I had to have more fiber - and have a cleaned up diet before and after surgery. I was breaking all the rules and suffering for it.

My next bit of advice : Get ALL BRAN, METAMUCIL (capsules and drink) , MINTEC tablets.

I went straight into it and suffered flatulence and bloating from increasing fiber to quick. I didn't care, because after 4-5 days I was now experiencing strain free bowel movements. And i was going every 2-3 days... not 4-5 (sometimes longer). I knew this had to be good even though there were a few bad days (I suspect I have a allergy to something I like which caused these.)

The surgeon I spoke to, does lots of Hemorrhoidectomy procedures. He had done 3 the previous day I had visited him. I asked about the procedure and he told me that he would laser and cut them out. Some surgeons cut and stitch. This procedure has to be one of the reasons why I have had a smooth recovery - I was getting surgery with a laser. Have a google around the net.

My advice: seek out getting a Hemorrhoidectomy with a laser.

(I'll post the next bits shortly - I'm typing it up.)


Now was the day I was going into hospital. I had luckily been saving for awhile and could afford what is known in Australia as private health insurance. (Not sure what its called in other countries) I had enough that would cover this operation. The surgeon doing the operation did both the public and private sectors. Public was a year wait... private was a month..

Before I went in, I was told that I would be staying till my "bowels opened". How hard could that be? I was going to find out shortly.

Had the operation, woke up pretty good. Felt wonderful and bright as you do coming out under the spell of anesthetic. I was told they gave me little to much... umm..... bang ! Problems began. I couldn't urinate. Hours went past and in the early hours of the morning I urinated. Then proudly going to bed a few minutes later my bowels felt like they needed to open and I subsequently went sat down in the toilet , then collapsed in there with low blood pressure. Nurses were frantic to get me into bed. I was ghostly white and barely conscious. There was 5 nurses at my bed. At this point in time, you should keep in mind that this was my reaction to anesthetic. About 2 hours after this while i was lying there with the oxygen mask on and the drip going for its life, the head nurse of the night paid me visit. She passed on this golden piece of information in relation to why I thought I needed to have a bowel movement.

My bowels were having spasms after the operation. They had been before I urinated and became more after urinated. What I didn't know was the nurses were not up to date with how she fixed the problem and she said it should be done after the operation. She applied an icepack to my butt! It was like going to the toilet itself, it was instant relief!

My advice : be aware your bowels will go into spasms. Apply an ice pack to the bowels.

My bottom wasn't sore at all. I was uncomfortable and moved gingerly, even though there was not a lot of pain. I was expecting pain ongoing, but it wasn't like that at all. They were not giving me any pain relief at this point, but I was on AGORAL (tasty pink laxative) and METAMUCIL. Lots of blood pressure checks and the like, I'm now a day and a bit past the operation.

(I'll post the next bits shortly - I'm typing it up.)


I was instructed very early on in hospital that I was required to be having salt baths at the beginning and end of the days, as well as after every bowel movement. Just normal table salt thrown into a hot bath. As many of you will probably be aware from this forum, that many do this.

My advice : salt baths twice a day and after every bowel movement.

Keep the bath in mind - prepare at home before hand how you are going to attack this. Its a crucial part of the healing process , as well as your overhaul well being. Trust what others have said - it is soothing! I choose before hand to have normal baths.

So now, I'm 2 days post op, no bowel movement. (Keep in mind I am still not having any pain killers). The surgeon instructed the nurses to double the AGORAL. I know I was taking 20ml to begin with, but I can't say I looked whether it was double, but it was more. It was lucky having more of a tasty pink cream.. yum.. was good.

I was eating 3 large meals a day. Lots in... nothing out. Even as I lay there I knew something had to give, and my mind was on the first time I had gone in there. Totally!

I went and had a snooze around 9ish that night in the hospital bed. Woke up about 2ish busting to go and urinate. The nurses had said before to press the buzzer if I even had a hint of strife. That was far from my mind, I was in my dressing gown , slippers on and tip toeing quickly to the toilet. Its at this point the real reason was revealing itself. I was not going to be standing I was going to be sitting at the toilet. For some reason, at this point in time I remembered another piece of golden advice the head nurse had given me - breathe.

My advice : You must keep breathing. No holding breath under ANY circumstances.

I had no idea why that sprung to mind, but if you are only going to take one thing from what I've typed up, this is it. When you stop breathing and hold your breath, your muscles tense up and work slower - result - more pain! DO NOT HOLD YOUR BREATH. Have this on a piece of paper in the toilet with you. It will help you focus - trust me.

I've now tossed the dressing gown and I'm starkers.When I put my butt on the toilet it felt uncomfortable, my legs were now feeling terrible. It was like they were cramping. I've only been in there for like 30 seconds at the most. When my bottom touched the seat, I felt the wetness on by butt. I stood up and could see the pool of blood in the bowel, as well as the drops that were still coming off it. Geez my legs hurt, I was not standing fully up but enough where I one foot on either side of the toilet. One thing i noticed after the operation that I haven't mentioned at this point, is that there was little or no swelling - i didn't go touching but thats the way it was.

My advice : do not strain, and do not push. Let the body do the work.

That bit of advice was said to many times by the surgeon. With good reason, thats how I came to be in this particular problem to begin with. Going to the toilet is an involuntary movement. Your body should be evacuating your bowels without your conscious intervention.

(I'll post the next bits shortly - I'm typing it up.)


The feeling of that first bowel movement has been described over and over in these forums. I wont be sparing you either. It important to know and it will help you in the long run.

My legs are very sore. Its hard for me now to stand the way I am, I have to keep changing from squatting/bending to been upright. The feeling from the bowels is something large is coming. I'm focusing on my legs at the moment as I can feel whatever is coming being moved by my stomach muscles. Its only been like a couple of minutes, and I'm starting to notice I'm holding my breath. I now consciously start my breathing routine.

Push the breath out - breathe in.
Push the breath out - breathe in.

I'm now trying to mimic the breathing women do at child birth.

As I start doing that breathing, things start moving quickly. I've now dropped from the squatting position to the toilet bowl itself. I'm sitting on my hands under my right leg leaning to the right hand side. There is no way my bum could put up with contact on the bowl. The pain now begins. I'm thinking its everything they say it is. Its like it started and slowed to a stop right on that pain threshold. I have never felt pain like that. I realize that I'm now holding my breath.... I start the breathing again and it starts moving again, the pain increases even more. I'm breathing faster, face feels hot. I feel like its stopping as I'm breathing heavily. Then its like the body muscles kicked it out with a contraction. I heard it hit the water/blood in the toilet. I just dropped forward onto my hands and knees breathing and trying to catch my breath. 100 things are going through my mind , one of which, is I can not do this again.

For all that effort I produced a round 1/2 inch dropping. It felt wayyy bigger then that, and I'm feeling a whole heap of self doubt at this point.

The pain, for the record, is gone when you evacuate the bowels. It was 1% of what it was by the time i fell to my hands/knees on the floor. I felt comfortable where I was (on the toilet floor), at a time where i was feeling extremely uncomfortable. Pain was gone, by it was very uncomfortable. Blood was dripping onto the tiles. But it wasn't hurting me or the floor.

Its at this point I press the buzzer for the nurse to come and look at what I did, while I now run a salt bath and sit in it.

The salt bath is your salvation, its where you reflect over what just happened. It feels so good on your bum (of which was not physically sore). the salt is not stinging or another form of pain. Its soothing. My leg muscles were feeling the soreness more then my buttocks. While sitting in there in the bath, I was going over what had happened.

1.) I was heavily constipated.
2.) I did not have any pain relief.
3.) When I breathed the motion seemed to guide itself.

By the time I got out of the bath and headed back to my bed, my legs still ached but I was no longer wallowing in self doubt. I had regained my confidence for the next movement - of which the nurse said i had not done enough to go home. I wasn't phased at this point.

I then had some more METAMUCIL, and AGORAL. I asked about the pain relief.... she said "you have the choice of morphine down panadol". My mind is ticking over thinking about the constipation at this point. All these things to a degree bind you back up. I need the stool to be softer, not harder and the effort to be getting easier. I choose the codeineless panadol, its the one you can pick up in any supermarket.....

Was I out of my mind? No - I was thinking something would be better then nothing. But not something that was going to prolong this by making me continually constipated, and from what a lot of what read on the forum. The pain relief helped some, but not all.

(I'll post the next bits shortly - I'm typing it up.)


It was now Day 4 in the hospital (3 days post operation). I was chowing down on breakfast. I had ALL BRAN and finished with a coffee. for some reason having a coffee has always triggered a bowel movement if I was close to having one. Morning tea came and I had another coffee.

Felt like I was back to constipation, then the feeling came back. I didn't know if I was gong to urinate or pooh. I was going in anyway. I'd put off the morning salt bath in anticipation of this movement.

When I got in and lifted the seat, my body straight away told me what i was here for. Here we go again. I started thinking of the pain from the first time when I came in. All the self doubt started back like a flood. To late now. I was here, and it was going to happen either way. My legs were aching badly now as I'd taken the dressing gown off. I took the position over the toilet, one leg on either side standing upright. As I bent over and lowered my buttocks towards the seat, the pain started. It just doesn't ease in, it just hits you. I lowered to the seat quickly putting both hands under my right leg leaning to the right hand side. The leaning brought it on.

I was holding my breath. I started breathing quickly. The pain just seemed to be increasing and things were moving slow. Things were taking longer. I could hear and feel the blood dripping from my bottom. I had to keep breathing... I kept going and going.. and then I felt drop out of the bowels. I was very conscious to push or strain, just let the muscles do the work. I remember having to think of things i was going to do when I was fit again -its the only thing to keep you going. It was like a few seconds were I was now standing bent forward catching my breath. Then it started again... there was more.

I remember thinking this was getting to much.

The pain started, I was back into the routine. But I was only going to drop this time when I had to. When the pain and the aching become to much. This stool felt bigger then the rest, but it wasn't moving as slow as the first to. It hit me hard, the pain was intense. I just kept breathing. I started thinking I was going to black out as I was really sucking in the breaths and pushing them out. Then i dropped and kept the breathing going. I leaned a little bit more to the right and it seemed to stimulate the stomach muscles more. Then it passed.... I heard it drop.

I immediately fell to my hands and knees on the floor. Exhausted and my legs aching. My butt didn't feel that bad compared to the rest of my body. I spent 5 minutes composing myself. I remember wishing i had taken something for the pain. I called the nurse and went had the salt bath thinking that the 2nd bowel movement was more intense then the first. But I was confident I had a strategy to do it - but it didn't remove the fear of going again.

I took some more AGAROL (Sorry I've been spelling it wrong till now) and METAMUCIL. The nurse said it was possible I'd be going home in the next few hours.

I thought my next bowel movement would have been at home, but I should have known better. I was taking laxatives and my bowels were now flowing and working...

(I'll post the next bits shortly - I'm typing it up.)


Vox, are you sure about your statement regarding adding “normal table salt” to the bath? I know Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) is typically prescribed as it has soothing characteristics. I’m not sure that is true for table salt (sodium chloride). They are two completely different compounds, granted both are classified as "salt".


Hi bykysia,

I asked the very same thing in the hospital. It is normal table salt. The reason is that normal table salt cleans and disinfects the wound.

I've used a combination of the two and Epsom salts on there own. Nothing gained. SO I recommend what they recommended to me in hospital and that is normal table salt.

It soothes anyway.

I didn't have anymore pain after DAY 7, and are at DAY 19. Still having a salt bath once a day now till I see the surgeon later this week.


Today, I am five weeks post op. I was still taking baths up until a couple days ago. I faired the experience much better than other posts I've read here, but after the four week post op point, I was getting very irritated at the lengthy recovery. From inactivity, I lost ten pounds (not at all what I wanted), and the thought of exercise was the furthest thing from my mind.

Last week, I just forced myself to workout. I was shocked at how weak I had become in that four week period. Working out (running, elliptical, stairs; no weights until two days ago) was pretty painful, and immediately following the workout was also painful, but about a half hour later, I would feel great. I kept at it daily last week, and over this weekend, my general pain and discomfort has really diminished. I'd say I'm feeling 95% recovered.

It's really too bad that the recovery from this procedure is so long. It makes you forget how miserable the hemorrhoids used to be. I’m glad it’s finally behind me, literally.


Hi Bksia,

I'm so glad you are doing well. I think its very important that people here get to know the stories of people who are doing well. Thus why I typed up my part - albeit I never finished typing it up. I was essentially recovered in the allocated 10 day period even though the recovery continues on.

You bring up a good point though - the hemorrhoids are miserable to have. Thats the goal, get rid of them and get back to a normal life.

My hemorrhoids had got very bad. People have to make sure they are seeing a Doctor/Surgeon who is doing many of these a week. If not, see someone else.


Vox, I wanted to send kudos for the little journal you kept for us. I am on day 15 post hemorrhoidectomy. I took notes and your well stated advice and wishing I could shake your hand, for making the most miserable two weeks of my life almost seem entertaining. I could not stop reading, long enough to go enjoy a salt bath. (up next) And I can't wait to share your story with the people who have been praying me through this...most especially my husband, who held my hand and cried with me while I was saying some of the very same words you said...."I can't do this one...not again". Since June 5, of '08 I have had a right rotator cuff surgery (with extensive PT), Aug. 22nd, a left rotator cuff surgery (more PT) and then again Dec. 5th another surgery to repair the tear the first surgeon left undone. "Well" I thought, "my deductable is met for '08, maybe I better get this one out of the way and save several thousand $$$$"....Dec. 30th, I entered the point of no return. I had already done the banding thing twice. I had been stapled once. Three years later, here we are again, and the same surgeon is telliing me that I am beyond those prodedures now. (I had no idea there was such a thing as a laser for this surgery, or I would have opted for that ).
I appreciated hearing about your getting back on the elliptical machine. I have looked high and low "googling the net" to know if it would be helpful to recovery or hinder it, and when to begin. Thanks for going (shortly) before me. I have been discouraged as you were, and annoyed that the two week recovery period he told me was not materializing (why don't they be upfront?!). Thank you for going to the trouble to journal your experience so eloquently. It has given me hope., and a smile! There really is life after the dreaded hemorrhoidectomy. :-D


Well, I gave credit to the wrong person for the elliptical advice. Thanks to Bksia for that. So blessings to you both! ;-)


Hi Femsher,

It makes me feel so good that what I typed up helped you, for lack of a better word, navigate your way through this. It can seem like the end of the world and pain as never experienced before. With the healing process going on, I think its important for somebody to see where they are after having the operation. Thus why I was very keen to pass on in detail where I was.

If it helped you, hopefully others will take the advice on board and it will serve them well also. We can't take away the pain, but we can put a good time line up what to expect.

So tell me about your pain... its only when you go? Its extremely intense but over sure as you've finished? I'm interested in knowing if the pain others experience is just when they pass the stools.

Thanks for taking the time to post Femsher - your one post made it ALL totally worthwhile me documenting it. :)


Be careful using Metamucil.

I went heavy on the fiber. That results in nice bowel movements in regards to frequency, but it can increase the size of them. I come to realize that I'd inadvertnetly increased the size of my stools by taking the recommended dosages on the container.

When you have a wounded backside - that can be awkward thing. So watch the size of the stools - mine I reckon doubled in size. Don't stop taking the Metamucil - just watch your dosages.

My Advice - Watch your Metamucil dosages. Don't over do the fibre.


Hey, i've got to say thanks for all your information everybody has been posting on this site it has made me feel terrified and also well informed about this topic. You see i've been dealing with bleeding hemorrhoids for about 5 years now and at the beginning of this year I decided to do something about it. I went to the doctors and saw a specialist in Brisbane and ended up having a colonoscopy & 3 internal bandings.

After the operation NO information was given to me on what to expect, except don't go to the toilet !! (what the hell did they mean by that?) well, i tell you i found out. After i left the hospital with my wife i started like i wanted to pee & pee & pee. I thought what the hell is going on ? No one told me about this is this normal and after reading on this site it seems very normal but WHY didn't the doctor tell me about this?

So i walked around and around the house just feeling like S*^T and trying to figure out what to expect so i decided to run a VERY hot bath WHAT A GODSEND. Took a few panadol and WOW 15 min later i was in heaven NO PAIN!!

A couple on months later the same proble returned no bleeding but a protusion. So i went ans saw the wonderful Professor and yes he is a Professor not a doctor to get some more bandings and told him my story. His response was like that shouldn't have happened WTF!! is this guy really a Professor?? oh one thing i forgot to mention was straight after the bandings in the recovery room they gave me bloody coffee. Everybody knows what instant coffeee does it wants to make you go to the toilet NOT A GOOD IDEA people.

So after my first proceedure i was not aware what to expect so i did a lot of pushing in the bath to try and pee and i think i undid the work of the bandings this is why i think i needed to go back for the second set of bandings.

Now it's been a couple of months after the 2nd set of bandings, which i was a bit better prepared for i think i' either up a a third round of banding or the DREADED SURGERY !!! but i'm a bit chicken. So i think i'll go for the banding instead and this time taking it really easy for the first couple of months as after the first 4 weeks on both occasions i started up my cycling (60km) every 2nd day which i think has bought on the 2nd and 3rd lot of hemorrhoids. So i'm still deciding what to do and what type of procedure to have the standard surgery, the Stapled surgery using that plunger gun thing or Lazer surgery.


Thank for that journal as usual this forum helped me in making my recovery a better one. I am 10 days post op i still fear going to the bathroom the doctor gave me mineral oil but i dont think its doing much for me when i do go to he toilet the stool is as small as a grape but took so much out a me. There were days i wish i didnt do this surgery as i also had belly ache up to last night and vomiting. Can u imagine the strain of the hemorrhoidectomy plus belly pain and vomiting. I still dont know why i am vomiting but i notice that the metamucil with the orange flavour makes me vomit or if i drink orange juice. I must agree with the salt bath i hear epsom but my doctor say table salt who cares both is sooting and relaxing i even sometimes pass the stool while am in it. The only problem am poor living in Jamaica and i dont have an inside bathroom so i have to boil my water on stove then pour it in a pan wished i had water heater in my bathroom it could be less stress. The operation cost me alot 100,000 jamaican dollars more than 1000 us luckily i had save to help my mom build a decent home but now i have to use it. I really wish the abdominal pain would go and let me go tru my recovery of the surgery. The surgery wasnt bad cause i did the surgery the saturday and the sunday i went to look prunes at the supermarket but didnt get any dam benefiber so expensive! i am on bananas, the mineral oil and a cereal i hope it works. I also have a pill they call bisacodyl but it makes my stool watery and i go 3 times a day thats too much pressure for the surgical area. ohhh no am burping and feeling a litle abdominal pain i beg God its nothing serious cause am out a cash plus i really cant go tru no more stress of doctor or surgery.