This antioxidant extract from the bark of the French maritime pine tree may help treat and prevent hemorrhoids. A study from Italy found that both topical and oral treatment with Pycnogenol® reduced the intensity and duration of pain and bleeding from hemorrhoids and even reduced the number of procedures and hospital admissions due to severe cases. The Italian investigators divided up 84 patients suffering with pain and bleeding from an acute episode of external hemorrhoids that had lasted 24 to 48 hours. One group was given 300 mg of Pycnogenol tablets daily for four days and then 150 mg daily for the next three days; those in group two received the same treatment plus 0.5% Pycnogenol topical cream; the patients in the third group were given a placebo. After a week, bleeding had stopped in patients in groups one and two but continued during two weeks of follow up among patients in the placebo group. The patients in the Pycnogenol groups also reported less pain and fewer lost working days. The research team concluded that Pycnogenol can help with all major hemorrhoid symptoms. Their findings were published in the December 29, 2009 issue of Phytotherapy Research.
More information on treating hemorrhoids.