Infrared Coagulation (IRC)

Infrared Coagulation is a widely used method for treating haemorrhoids and is usually performed immediately after a colonoscopy while the patient is still sedated.

This procedure involves applying infrared light through the anus to compress and seal haemorrhoid veins.

IRC is relatively painless, especially when performed in conjunction with colonoscopy.

Sedation

This procedure requires intravenous sedation via a small needle to a vein at the back of the hand or in the arm. In some patients the injection may cause a local reaction and sometimes bruising under the skin may occur. But these are usually reversible local reactions and will resolve in a few days. The throat may be sprayed with a local anaesthetic agent to lessen the feel of the endoscope tube being inserted. The throat may feel numb for a short time and will resolve in a few hours.

Complications

In some patients, temporary discomfort or pain may occur due to the introduction of air into the stomach or bowel. In rare instances major complications like perforation (puncture) of the oesophagus, stomach, small bowel or colon can occur. Haemorrhage (bleeding) following removal of polyps, infection, cardiac or respiratory arrest related to sedation/anaesthesia may also occur.

If you wish to discuss the potential risks or any issues regarding your procedure(s) in more detail, please speak with the gastroenterologist.