<bold>The aim of the study</bold> was to evaluate the results of the treatment of internal hemorrhoids and anal mucosal prolapse using elastic band ligation and to compare this method to chosen surgical procedures.
<bold>Material and methods.</bold> The study included 648 patients (363 males and 285 females). 474 patients were treated using an elastic band ligature and 174 patients underwent surgical hemorrhoidectomy. The average age of the patients in both groups was similar - 49 years.
The treatment tolerance was evaluated in the prospective study group. The intensity and duration of pain was assessed on the first and second postoperative day using a Verbal Rating Scale.
<bold>Results.</bold> 86.5% of the patients were cured using Barron's procedure, success rate for second-degree hemorrhoids was 89% and for third degree - 85.2%. Surgical hemorrhoidectomy was effective in 92% of patients. Early failure of elastic ligature was noted in 2.5% of patients. The recurrences of hemorrhoidal symptoms were observed in 11% of Barron's group and in 8% after hemorrhoidectomy. The intensity of pain was much higher among patients after surgical hemorrhoidectomy. The average of the pain score in the 4th hour was 0.3 for the elastic band ligation and 1.4 for the surgical treatment. In the 24th hour - 0.2 and 1.7 respectively. Mean postoperative stay was 3.8 days.
<bold>Conclusions.</bold> Rubber band ligation is highly effective and well tolerated. Relatively minor pain following this procedure is found in only 9.5% of patients. The disadvantages of surgical hemorrhoidectomy are: important postoperative pain and long time of wound healing that impair the recovery to professional activity.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.