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Colorectal Dis. 2013 Nov;15(11):e686-91. doi: 10.1111/codi.12406.

Visualization and hypervascularization of the haemorrhoidal plexus in vivo using power Doppler imaging transanal ultrasonography and three-dimensional power Doppler angiography.

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Department of Surgery and Proctologic Surgery, Miyamoto Hospital, Anan, Japan; Department of Digestive and Pediatric Surgery, Institute of Health Biosciences, University of Tokushima Graduate School, Tokushima, Japan.



The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the distribution of haemorrhoidal arteries and the relationship between vascularity and growth of haemorrhoids.


One-hundred and three patients with haemorrhoids were studied. Using power Doppler imaging (PDI) transanal ultrasound and three-dimensional power Doppler angiography (3D-PDA), the course of the arteries supplying the haemorrhoids was identified. Measurement of the PDI area was made using the cursor to outline the power Doppler signal of the haemorrhoid, approximately 1 cm above the dentate line.


The haemorrhoidal arteries were seen as branches of the superior rectal artery and were detected in 75.7, 71.8, 68.0 and 62.1% of the 11, 7, 3 and 1 o'clock positions in the lithotomy position. The median number of haemorrhoidal arteries significantly increased from three to six with progression of the Goligher classification from Grade 1 to Grade 4 (P < 0.0001). The PDI areas in Grades 1, 2, 3 and 4 were 0.04 ± 0.03, 0.18 ± 0.07, 0.38 ± 0.18 and 0.96 ± 0.32 cm(2) (P < 0.05).


The distribution of haemorrhoidal arteries varies widely in both number and position. Using PDI transanal ultrasonography and 3D-PDA it was possible to visualize the haemorrhoid plexus and the course of the haemorrhoidal artery in vivo.


Haemorrhoidal artery; internal haemorrhoid; power Doppler imaging; three-dimensional power Doppler angiography

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