I've suffered with external hemorrhoids for around 3 years now, since I was 19. I always thought it was something older people had and was devastated when one appeared!! I had been very unwell and bed-ridden for several months, combine that with a extremely poor diet and hello hemmies. When they first appeared, I left them alone and hoped they would just go away - they did not. I found this site and went to town with the remedies. The only thing that worked was Apple Cider Vinegar applied topically and that helped with the itching and burning pain and shrank them to a more comfortable size. And then I stopped treating and left them again...... You can probably guess what happened! And this time nothing worked. I tried everything I could and all that happened was that the darn things got more swollen and painful. I gave in and went to the doctors but all they would do was give me otc creams and painkillers.
So in my absolute desperation, I bought some numbing cream and a pair of nail scissors and cut them away. I cannot stress enough how stupid and dangerous that was!! Please if you've thought about doing it yourself - DON'T!!! Luckily, VERY luckily, the cuts healed without infection and not much scarring and everything still works down there. I didn't have many problem for several months after that but then they suddenly flared up again.
This time the only thing that worked for me was sitz baths and rutin. They calmed down back to 'normal' after a few weeks and didn't cause too much trouble for a while. Then boom, last week some verrry bad diet choices has lead to a major flare-up. I've taken rutin by the bucket load, sitz bathed my days away - everything that worked before hasn't worked this time.
I had some witch hazel chilling in the fridge for some nasty bruises and thought the chill at least might give some relief from the itching and burning. I soaked a cotton wool pad and put it on the area for about 15 minutes and wouldn't you know it, the blighters have shrunk by half and aren't bothering me at all! I can't believe it. The first time I developed hemmies, witch hazel didn't make a blind bit of difference, yet this time it's been my life saver! So if you're having problems, don't give up! Keep mixing it up with the remedies and hopefully you'll find something that works for you :)