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Rubber Band Ligation for Hemorrhoids

June 10, 2008 - 7:30am
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Rubber Band Ligation for Hemorrhoids



In a rubber band ligation, is done to treat internal hemorrhoids. An elastic band is placed around the base of a hemorrhoid]]> to cut off circulation. This will cause the hemorrhoid to slough off.

Parts of the Body Involved

  • Anus
  • Lower rectum

Reasons for Procedure

Rubber band ligation is performed to treat internal hemorrhoids, which are swollen blood vessels that develop inside the anus.

Internal Hemorrhoid

Nucleus image

© 2008 Nucleus Medical Art, Inc.

Risk Factors for Complications During the Procedure

  • Bleeding disorder

What to Expect

Prior to Procedure

Your doctor will likely do the following:

  • Physical exam, including examination of the anus and a digital rectal exam

In the days leading up to your procedure:

  • Follow your doctor's instructions regarding diet and activity.
  • Take certain medications, if prescribed by your doctor.
  • Arrange to have someone drive you to and from the procedure, and for help at home after your procedure.


Local—In some cases, an anesthetic may be injected into the hemorrhoid. You may also be given a sedative to help you relax.

Description of the Procedure

You may be asked to lie on your left side. Your doctor will insert a scope into your anus to view the hemorrhoid. Once the hemorrhoid is located, your doctor will place a rubber band around its base.

After Procedure

You will be taken to a recovery area.

How Long Will It Take?

The procedure typically takes less than 1 hour.

Will It Hurt?

Unless the hemorrhoid is numbed with an anesthetic, you will likely feel some pain and discomfort during and after the procedure.

Possible Complications

  • Pain
  • Tightness
  • Bleeding
  • Infection

Average Hospital Stay

In most cases, you will be observed for a short period and then allowed to go home.

Postoperative Care

After returning home, you should do the following:

  • Follow your doctor's instructions regarding your diet.
  • If you took sedatives during the procedure, avoid driving or using heavy machinery for at least a day afterwards, since sedatives may slow your reaction time.
  • Take sitz baths to relieve pain and tightness.
  • Avoid heavy lifting.
  • Take medications, if directed to do so by your doctor.


The banded tissue will slough off in about a week after your procedure. It usually takes 2-4 banding procedures to eliminate the hemorrhoid. The procedures can be done 6-8 weeks apart.

Call Your Doctor If Any of the Following Occurs

  • Increasing or persistent pain
  • Bleeding
  • Fever
  • Increase of or change in your original symptoms


American Gastroenterological Association

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases


Canadian Association of Gastroenterology

Health Canada


Hemorrhoids and what to do about them. Harvard Medical School website. Available at: http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/Hemorrhoids_and_what_to_do_about_them.htm. Accessed April 18, 2007.

Internal hemorrhoids. DynaMed website. Available at: http://dynamed101.epnet.com/Detail.aspx?id=116475. Accessed April 18, 2007.

Surgery for hemorrhoids. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health website. Available at: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/tutorials/hemorrhoidsurgery/gs069101.pdf . Accessed April 23, 2007.

Last reviewed May 2008 by ]]>Daus Mahnke, MD]]>

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.


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