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Best Medications for Hemorrhoids

written by: Lashan Clarke • edited by: BStone • updated: 4/29/2011

The best medication for hemorrhoids is available as either a topical application or as a suppository. The medications used to treat hemorrhoids include hydrocortisone, witch hazel, zinc oxide, benzocaine, and phenylephrine.

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    There are a variety of medications that can be used in the treatment of hemorrhoids. Each medication will offer relief in one or more ways, such as reducing inflammation, protecting tissue and reducing the amount of blood flow to the area. The following is a list of some of the best medication for hemorrhoids:

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    Hydrocortisone

    The first type of medication for the treatment of hemorrhoids is one that belongs to a class of drugs known as anti-inflammatories. As the name suggests, an anti-inflammatory medication will reduce the swelling of the blood vessels within the anal and rectal areas. It is administered either as a cream or suppository. Hydrocortisone will act on internal hemorrhoids within the body. Hydrocortisone as a cream will also act on a specific area and can be rubbed on external hemorrhoids.

    The side effects of hydrocortisone include itching and dryness at the site of application. A more severe allergic reaction can produce hives, difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, rash and tightness in the chest. Hydrocortisone should not be used for more than a week or two at a time.

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    Zinc Oxide

    Zinc oxide is another popular form of medication for hemorrhoids. It is applied as a cream to external hemorrhoids. This medication is used to reduce the itching and redness experienced with hemorrhoids. On application, the zinc oxide will form a barrier over the skin, reducing its irritation. Zinc oxide is also used to treat diaper rash for the same reason. Petroleum jelly can also be used in the treatment of hemorrhoids to form a barrier so the hemorrhoid can heal. The most common side effects of zinc oxide are itching, along with a stinging or burning sensation.

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    Benzocaine

    The next category of medication used in the treatment of hemorrhoids are analgesics. An example of this, Benzocaine works to bring pain relief. It will function to bind to the pain receptors. Hemorrhoids can be a painful condition in which repeated abrasion can make them even more inflamed. In some cases an analgesic medication is one of the first treatment methods prescribed, and they can relieve the spastic pain associated with this condition.

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    Preparation H

    Preparation H is the brand name for hemorrhoidal medication used to treat the pain and itching experienced by this condition. The active ingredient in some formulas of Preparation H is phenylephrine HCl, but it can also contain an astringent such as witch hazel or cream such as petroleum jelly. Preparation H is available in cream or suppository form and its most common side effects include dizziness in phenylephrine-based treatments, rash, tingling and increased blood pressure.

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    Phenylephrine HCl

    Another type of medication for hemorrhoids can decrease the amount of blood flow to the vessels, known as a vasoconstrictor. When the blood flow is reduced, then the hemorrhoid will not be as painful as having a larger inflamed vessel to deal with. However, it should be noted that a type of medication such as this can reduce the blood supply based on a location, but it can have harmful side effects. Side effects include dizziness, fainting, high blood pressure. Even if this is one of the best medication for hemorrhoids, this treatment is contraindicated in someone with high blood pressure.

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