HOBOKEN, N.J.A study published in Phytotherapy Research revealed Pycnogenol®, an antioxidant plant extract from the bark of the French maritime pine tree, has important anti-inflammatory and anti-thrombotic properties that may be beneficial in patients with hemorrhoids, both for acute and chronic treatment, and in preventing new attacks.
In a controlled, randomized manner, 84 patients were treated orally and topically with Pycnogenol for the management of acute hemorrhoidal attacks. Within less than 48 hours of onset of an acute attack, patients were enrolled and signs and symptoms were scored. This evaluation was repeated after seven days' treatment and again seven days following treatment cessation. The decrease in scores was significantly more pronounced in the Pycnogenol-treated groups than in the control group given a placebo (P<0.05), showing the efficacy of Pycnogenol for relieving signs and symptoms of acute external hemorrhoids. In a group of patients given topical (0.5 percent) Pycnogenol, in addition to oral Pycnogenol the improvement in symptoms set in significantly faster and was more pronounced. The most prominent symptom, hemorrhoidal bleeding, was completely absent in all patients treated with Pycnogenol for seven days and also at the 14 days follow-up. In contrast, bleedings were still observed in the control group during the two weeks follow-up. Researchers concluded Pycnogenol, both in oral and in topical form, eased the management of acute hemorrhoidal attacks and help avoid bleedings.