March 30th, 2012

The following artice is from the Bristol Evening Post (May 2010):

Pioneering op for former City star

A FORMER Bristol City player has undergone a pioneering procedure to treat his piles.

Gerry Sweeney, who played more than 400 games for the team in the 70s and 80s, blames his match-day routine for the painful haemorrhoids he suffered in later life.

The 64-year-old, who now works as a window cleaner, underwent the HALO (haemorrhoid artery ligation operation), at Spire Bristol Hospital.

Mr Sweeney, of Portishead, said: “I got caught short on the training ground once, so after that I used to make myself go to the toilet before going out to play, and I think that is where the problem started.”

He was part of the side that reached the old First Division under Alan Dicks and was a member of the famous Ashton Gate Eight, who agreed to have their long-term contracts torn up in order to save the debt-ridden club from going under in 1982.

Mr Sweeney was referred to the private hospital on the Downs after his piles worsened. He said: “I had the operation earlier this year and since then it has been a thousand times better. In fact, the piles have disappeared altogether and my life has returned to normal.”

Consultant Paul Sylvester said: “HALO is performed as a day case under a light anaesthetic or sedation. It only takes about 20 minutes and the patient can return to work soon afterwards. It involves cutting off the blood supply feeding the piles and has a 90 per cent success rate.”

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