In 1978, Carter had to leave a Christmas party for White House staffers "to receive emergency
treatment" for a painful hemorrhoid that left him "almost completely incapacitated
from participating in any kind of public events"
For the first and only time during his Presidency, Carter cancelled all his scheduled events
for the next day. He was given an injection of Demerol and slept at least part of that day.
It was difficult for Carter to walk
The problem was successfully concealed from the public -- for a time. On Christmas Eve,
however, President Anwar Sadat of Egypt "announced to the world that his good friend Jimmy
had hemorrhoids and made a public appeal for all Egyptians... to pray on this holy day that
I would be cured. ... The day after Christmas, for the first time in weeks, all the pain and
discomfort went away. I was tempted to make a public announcement thanking people of all faiths
for their prayers, but decided that we'd had enough publicity about my ailment. In any case,
I've never received a better Christmas gift or felt more grateful for personal benefits that
resulted from a nation at prayer"
Carter mentions that he was "first afflicted" with hemorrhoids as a young submarine
officer, "but this time it was much worse than ever before"
It therefore appears this was a recurrent problem for him.