Sources: Papers On Health
This very common trouble is caused by one or more of the veins
in the lower bowel losing their elasticity, so as to protrude more or
less from the anus, especially when the stress of a motion of the
bowels forces them out. When no blood proceeds from this swollen vein,
it is sometimes called a blind pile. If blood comes, it is called a
There are few illnesses more prevalent than this, few that seem to be
less rationally dealt with, and yet few that are more easily cured.
It is distressing to think of what some poor people have to suffer from
this disease, while they are still compelled to go on working, and even
walking, in the most depressing sufferings. It is still more
distressing to think of the painful operations which some have to
undergo in having the relaxed portions of these veins cut out. Even
when the piles have got to a very advanced stage it is not difficult to
cure. It will generally be found that there is Constipation (see), so
first of all, the bowels must be regulated. This may be done by means
of liquorice and senna mixture, and strict attention to diet and
exercise. Then the nerve action in the lower back is to be stimulated
by applying to the back below the waist a large BRAN POULTICE (see).
Rub the back after this with hot vinegar, dry, rub with olive oil, and
wipe off the oil gently. Do this at bedtime. Into the bowels may be
injected (with the fountain enema) first one or two injections of warm
water; then an injection of warm water and white-wine vinegar. Be
particular to have this mixture not too strong. A trial may be made
with one tablespoonful of vinegar to a pint of water. If any pain is
caused, inject simple lukewarm water and use the vinegar and water next
time weaker. A very weak mixture has a wonderfully healing effect.
After one pint of this mixture has been injected, an injection of cool
water (but not cold) should follow. The vinegar should be so weak that
it will cause no pain, properly speaking,--only just the slightest
sensation of smarting. It will be possible to use the water colder and
the vinegar stronger as you get on with the cure, but in both, your own
feelings and good sense will guide you. This direction will suit other
cases of internal syringing, in which membranes have got relaxed, and
need to be braced with cold and weak acid. In all such troubles it
should be remembered that the warm or tepid water is used at first only
because the cold might be felt uncomfortable till the surfaces are
prepared for it. It is the cold that does the good. After this,
protruding piles may be gently manipulated by the fingers and pushed
back into their place. During this the patient must press outwards, as
if to discharge faeces from the bowel. The anus will then open and
permit of the piles being pressed in. The injecting treatment may be
given twice a day. If too painful, even bathing the parts with the
vinegar and cold water has great healing power.
Let the sufferer, if at all possible, have entire rest for a
fortnight during the treatment, and lie down as much as convenient.
In mild cases, simply bathe the piles with cold water and press them
back into their places. A daily wash of the anus with SOAP (see) and
warm water, followed by a cold sponging, will do much to prevent piles.