Hemorrhoids Due to Pregnancy and Childbirth

Article reviewed by Marc Steben

The growing baby in your uterus and the delivery itself can cause an increase in the pressure of the veins in your lower body causing them to swell. Thus resulting in hemorrhoids due to pregnancy and childbirth.

Risk factors for developing hemorrhoids during pregnancy?

There are a few other reasons that make women more prone to hemorrhoids due to pregnancy and childbirth:

  • Circulating blood volume increases 25-40% during pregnancy, which can cause venous engorgement
  • Decrease in blood flow is caused by the expanding pregnant uterus
  • Lack of valves in hemorrhoidal veins and their draining veins
  • Chronic constipation related to pregnancy or taking an iron supplement
  • And possibly even genetic factors

Risk factors for developing hemorrhoids after childbirth?

Hemorrhoids are also most likely to develop in the weeks following delivery, generally at a time when body changes that occurred during pregnancy are being reversed and scarring of the tissue proceeds. The main risk factors during this period are:

  • Constipation  
  • Incomplete bowel emptying
  • A difficult delivery
  • Lengthy labour
  • A high-birthweight baby
  • Forceps delivery
  • Refraining from having a bowel movement because a fear of pain aggravating the cycle of pain, spasm and difficult emptying of the bowel
  • A perineal tear that can extend to a partial or complete tear of the anus
  • An episiotomy that can extend to a partial or complete tear of the anus, etc.

Although these symptoms appear related to trauma during vaginal delivery, caesarean
deliveries are not a complete guarantee against the onset of hemorrhoids. Other factors unrelated to pregnancy can also be responsible for symptoms of hemorrhoids that occur during or after childbirth. For this reason, it is a good idea to see a healthcare professional right away instead of letting your symptoms persist. Treatment options are available to help relieve your symptoms and prevent other complications.