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Sentinel piles. Are they actually piles at all?

Accurately diagnosing haemorrhoids is difficult, even for medical practitioners.

This is especially true of sentinel piles, because they are in fact not hemorrhoids at all. A sentinel pile is also known as a sentinel anal skin tag or rectal skin tag, and, for the more medically minded, may also be called a hypertrophied papilla or fibro-epithelial polyp.

Sentinel piles are common and usually harmless growths that hang off the skin around the outside of the anus at the front edge at the junction of the anus and the perineum. It is not contagious, but may be due to a lesion, inflammation, anal injury or skin left behind after a haemorrhoid treatment.

More generally, anal skin tags are not a risk to health, but they can cause issues with cleanliness after going to the toilet. This is mainly due to the fact that they can trap moisture and become irritated. Anal tags can be found around the anal periphery and may be single or multiple. The anterior one is called the sentinel tag.

Whilst they may be unsightly, they shouldn’t cause the same problems that are associated with suffering from internal and external hemorrhoids.

Get in touch with an advisor for a discreet chat to see how we can help.

See how eXroid's unique haemorrhoid treatment works

  • Treats all grades of internal piles
  • Walk-in, Walk-out treatment
  • No bowel preparation or anaesthesia required
  • Delivered by GMC registered Consultants
  • Clinics throughout the UK and home treatment service available
  • Appointments available within 24 hours

The benefits of electrotherapy


The eXroid treatment takes 30 minutes or less. You can usually go back to work on the same day.


eXroid is one of the gentlest treatment available for piles.


All grades of haemorrhoids can be treated with the gentle and non invasive procedures


Get back to your life straightaway. Procedure can be carried out in clinic or in the comfort of your own home.


This procedure requires no anaesthetic and is a walk in walk out treatment


eXroid electrotherapy has been approved by NICE (IPG525 & MIB201) and carries the CE mark.

As featured in the national press

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To find out about our clinics or our home treatment service please call
0800 999 3777

What are patients saying about their eXroid treatment?

To find out about our clinics or our home treatment service please call 0800 999 3777

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, electrotherapy is recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) for UK patients, and has been shown to be an effective method for treating smaller haemorrhoids. It can also be used as an alternative to surgery for treating larger haemorrhoids, but there is less evidence (at present) for its effectiveness.

eXroid are working to NICE guidelines to support the development of further evidence and research on the effectiveness of the treatment for larger and higher grade haemorrhoids.

Please see https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/piles-haemorrhoids/treatment/for more information.

No, we’ll take care of everything for you and we’ll even write to your GP afterwards to let them know.

Electrotherapy for haemorrhoids is a treatment that the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has evaluated and recommended for UK patients (source NHS.UK).

From 1st April 2019, the NHS has implemented restrictions in the scope of its services which means that over 17 procedures will only be funded by the NHS in exceptional individual circumstances. The list includes:

  • Breast reduction;
  • Removal of benign skin lesions;
  • Grommets for Glue Ear;
  • Tonsillectomy for sore throats;
  • Haemorrhoid surgery;
  • Hysterectomy for heavy menstrual bleeding;
  • Chalazia (lesions on eyelids) removal;
  • Removal of bone spurs for shoulder pain;
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome release;
  • Dupuytren’s contracture release for tightening of fingers;
  • Ganglion excision – removal of noncancerous lumps on the wrist or hand;
  • Trigger finger release;
  • Varicose vein surgery

Where possible,  we’re doing all we can to support patients appeal their referrals, and we’re here to help where the NHS are unable to cover treatment.

We advise patients to review the ‘limited procedure lists’ which their local NHS Clinical Care Group (CCG) will provide directly or on their website and contact us for advice and help where needed.

The eXroid treatment is usually not painful and usually causes minimal or no discomfort.

Please give us a call on 0800 999 3777 to discuss treatment costs or fill out our contact form below.

You can book your appointment via our website or alternatively if you would like to speak to an advisor, you can either contact us using our online chat service or call us on 0800 999 3777

We’ll take full payment at time of booking with either a major debit or credit card including American Express. We also have finance options available.

Please note that cancellations less than 48 hours before the appointment may result in a cancellation fee. See Legal notices and Terms of use

eXroid is now covered by some major health insurers.

We’re working with all other major health insurers to enable your insurance to cover our treatment. When you ring for a chat or to book an appointment, we’ll advise whether your insurance will cover an eXroid treatment.  Your insurance company may need a treatment code for electrotherapy, which is H5260. See Payment Terms in TERMS OF USE.

It can take up to 10 minutes for each pile, or up to 30 minutes for one session treating 3 piles. An initial consultation and treatment takes 45 – 60 minutes.

We would advise against having the treatment if you have any of the below conditions:

  • Pregnancy
  • Pacemaker and / or defibrillator implant
  • Bleeding disorder
  • Anticoagulant therapy with Warfarin where the INR is greater than 3.0
  • Active anorectal infection
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Lower abdominal / lower quadrant transplant patients
  • Purely external haemorrhoids
  • Megacolon

No, you don’t need to do anything before your treatment.

This is usually possible for most. For some patients, a short recovery time may be required and, for a small percentage (actually 11%) one or more days is sometimes required.

Yes, the consultant/nurse will advise you on treatment expectations as part of your consultation and treatment.

Larger piles or patients with more than three haemorrhoids may require more than one treatment, although a number of patients with large piles have been cleared after just one gentle treatment.

Yes, if you decide not to go ahead after your examination we will refund you the cost of the procedure.

Yes, we will always make sure there is someone there for you.

Many of our patients are cleared of their haemorrhoids after one treatment. Larger piles or patients with more than three haemorrhoids may require more than one treatment. The number of treatments you need largely depends on how many piles you have and how big they are, although even patients with larger piles have been cleared of their haemorrhoids after just one gentle treatment.

We’re working with all major health insurers to enable your insurance to cover our treatment. When you ring for a talk or to book an appointment, we will advise whether your insurance will cover an eXroid treatment.  Your insurance company may need a treatment code for electrotherapy, which is H5260. See Payment Terms in TERMS OF USE.

Get in touch with eXroid

eXroid provides non-invasive haemorrhoid treatment in the comfort of your own home and from selected local haemorrhoid clinics across the UK.

You don’t have to suffer in silence and dealing with piles doesn’t have to be something you do alone. Get in touch with an expert today.

For more details about haemorrhoid treatment costs, get in touch today and you could be treated at one of our local haemorrhoid clinics or at home as quickly as tomorrow.

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  • Call:

0800 999 3777

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eXroid COVID-19 Update

Elective treatments suspended for the next 3 weeks
Following the Prime Minister’s national address at 20:30 on Monday 23rd March, it is imperative that we do our utmost to restrict the spread of COVID-19 and safeguard our patients and their communities, our staff and our clinics. Whilst we will always aim to do all we can to help and bring relief to our patients, we are bound by the greater cause to limit this highly infectious virus. We are therefore, as of now, re-scheduling all of our clinics and appointments to over 3 weeks into the future in line with the government guidance.

We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience and we will speak to everyone of our booked patients individually and do all we can to provide support.

We do, however, understand that there are some extreme cases and where patients feel there is an extreme detriment to their quality of life and / or they are suffering excessive bleeding, we will continue to provide our service on an emergency basis, where possible. This will be preceded by a triage call with myself initially, to ascertain what the issues are and to try to help remotely with a prescription, if possible, in the short term. If you have any concerns please contact us on 0800 999 3777.

We will continue to keep all of our patients directly informed and fully intend to treat everyone as planned, once the current restrictions have been lifted, presently scheduled for after the next three weeks.

The latest information is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance

Again, if there are any questions or support we can offer, our team will remain working and available to support.

Kind Regards,

Dr Mark J. Hudson-Peacock,
Chairman and Medical Director