Fistula is a medical term, which is used to describe an abnormal connection formed between two hollow spaces in the human body. Fistulas are formed between hollow spaces like blood vessels, intestines and various other hollow organs present in the body. They are most commonly formed as a result of injury, infection or inflammation. In a few cases, fistula treatment is possible with surgery as well.
In a nutshell, fistulas can be formed anywhere between two hollow spaces in the body.
However, the most common type of fistula are:
- Anal fistula
- Obstetric fistula
- Arteriovenous fistula.
Anus is the external opening in a human body. Anus is an important part of the gastrointestinal system through which the digestive system expels out waste products like faeces.
Anus also has a few glands that lines the inner portion of the anus. These glands may get infected due to several reasons like exposure to pathogens, injury or blockage. Exposure to pathogens, injury or blockage may lead to the formation of an infected mass which is called an abscess. Chances of these abscesses turning into fistula are significantly high. More than fifty percent of these abscesses can progress into fistula.
Most anal fistulas are formed as a result of an infection that starts in an anal gland. This infection again in turn results in an abscess. This abscess drains spontaneously or surgically through the skin next to the anus. Then a fistula forms a tunnel under the skin and connects with the infected gland.
A patient presenting with anal fistula will first and foremost associate his condition with pain and discomfort. He will complain of a dull aching pain, swelling and discomfort over the anal area. Patient will also complain of painful bowel movements and abnormal discharges. There can also be a complain of generalized discomfort and irritation around the anal area.
The symptoms of anal fistula are –
- Pain around the anal area.
- Swelling around the anal area.
- High fever.
- Fever with chills.
- General body weakness.
- Redness around anal opening.
- Soreness around anal opening.
- Itching around anal opening.
- Draining of pus around anal opening.
- Mucoid discharge from anal opening.
If you’re experiencing any such symptoms then you must visit your doctor immediately. You can visit, bottom’s up clinic which is the best hospital anal fistula surgery in bangalore.
Anyone that has suffered an infection or injury in the anal region and has develop an anal abscess, has a 50% chance of developing an anal fistula. Chances of forming an anal fistula remain almost the same even if the abscess drains on its own.
However these are certain other conditions that adversely affect lower digestive tract or anal area. These conditions also increase the risk of getting an anal fistula.
These conditions are:
- IBS, Irritable bowel syndromes.
- Crohn’s disease.
- Chronic diarrhea.
- Chronic constipation.
Patients undergoing radiation treatment for rectal cancer are also at risk. If you suffer from any of the medical issues mentioned above and are experiencing symptoms suggestive of anal fistula , visit your doctor immediately.
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If you have symptoms that suggest an anal fistula, meet your general healthcare provider. Your physician may refer you to a specialist who specializes in colon and rectal diseases. For the best treatment and management of fistula, visit bottom’s up clinic in Bangalore. Bottom’s up clinic is one stop for treatment, prevention and excellent management of anal fistula.
In order to make a complete diagnosis, the specialist will ask about your symptoms and your past medical history. There will also be a physical examination to visualise the problem. During this physical examination your doctor will look for a fistula which is a tunnel like opening near your anal opening. Your doctor may also press on the area to see if it is sore and whether pus comes out or not.
There are several other methods that can be used for the diagnosis of anal fistulas.
These methods are:
- Fistula probe – In this method of diagnosis, a long, thin probe is guided through the outer opening of the fistula. A dye is also injected to find out where the fistula opens.
- Anoscope. This is a special instrument which is used to look inside your anal canal and check for the presence of anal fistulas.
- Imaging studies. – such as ultrasound or MRI
- Ultrasound – creates an image of the anal area using sound waves.
- MRI – makes images of the area using special magnets and a computer.
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Anal fistula when not treated properly and diagnosed onn the right time can result in several complications.
Even after treatment complications can occur, like a fistula that recurs even after treatment. Patient may also experience an inability to control bowel movements, known as fecal incontinence.
These complications most likely occur if some of the muscle around the anal opening that keep the anus tight, called anal sphincter, is removed.
If you are experiencing problems with your gastrointestinal health, and are experiencing symptoms suggestive of an anal fistula, call your health care provider immediately, specially if you have a previous history of anal abscess or you have been treated for an abscess or fistula before.
Inform your doctor know right away if you have any of the following:
- Redness around anal area.
- Swelling around anal area.
- Bleeding from the anus.
- Discharge from the anus.
- Pus discharge from the anus.
- If you’re experiencing trouble controlling your bowel movements.
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Meet your doctor, specifically a colorectal specialist in order to effectively manage your anal fistula problem. Visit bottom’s up clinic, best clinic in Bangalore for treatment and management of anal fistula.
Management of anal fistulas may include :
- Soak in a warm bath 3 or 4 times a day, this will reduce pain and discomfort.
- Wear a pad over your anal area until healing is complete.
- Resume doing normal activities only when you are cleared by your surgeon.
- Eat a diet high in fiber and drink plenty of fluids to avoid constipation.
- Use a stool softener or bulk laxative as prescribed by the doctor to avoid constipation.
Make sure that when you are recovering from anal fistula treatment, take pain medicine only as directed and prescribed by your surgeon. Complete the course of all of your antibiotics and don’t leave them abruptly in between. Do not take any over-the-counter medicines without first talking to your provider and checking with them.
Once the anal fistula has been diagnosed, your colo rectal specialist will plan out a course of treatment for you.
Treatment generally involves surgery based on the depth, extent and severity of the fistula and healing depends on the severity of the condition.
- Most of the anal fistulas respond very well to surgery.
- Most anal fistulas heal within 1 – 6 weeks post-surgery.
- Most of the patients are able to go back to normal lifestyle and work after 1 to 2 weeks of surgery for anal fistula.
- In some cases, it may takr about 6 weeks for complete healing of anal fistula.
- For some patients, healing may even take a few weeks to several months .
- For some patients it can take years for complete healing of the fistula.
It is advised to visit for follow up with the surgeons on a regular basis after surgery.
Meet the doctor as recommended during the healing phase. This is important for monitoring and evaluating the healing process after surgery.
Visit the doctor on a regular basis and following your doctor’s advice properly will ensure an early detection of the relapse of the disease.
Most surgeons recommend the following things post surgery –
- Placement of gauze should be done over the surgical site for absorbing drainage.
- To Soak the area in warm bath.
- Soaking the area is done for providing relief, prevent infection and faster recovery.
- This will also ensure complete healing of anal fistula.
- Your doctor may also recommended to use stool softeners and laxatives for a week.
- As the area is sore after surgery, pain killers are often recommended.
Do not take any over the counter medications or treat your pain on your own. In case you have a feeling of pain or discomfort then visit your doctor immediately.
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There are various treatments which can be done to cure anal fistula. Some of them are –
Kshar sutra for Fistula is one of the successful Ayurveda treatment methods for treatment of anal fistulas. It is one of the treatments with high success rate. It is an Ayurvedic Para-surgical therapy for the management of anorectal disorders. Bottoms’ up clinic is one stop destination for kshar sutra treatment in Bangalore.
This is a surgical procedure in which the fistula tract is completely cut out. Under general anesthesia, the fistula tract is removed. After the removal, a groove that is formed is left behind to heal. This procedure however carries the risk of damage to the sphincter muscle. A damage of anal spinchter muscles can result in fecal incontinence. That’s why fistulectomy is generally used as an option for treatment of Complex fistula.
While performing fistulotomy, your doctor will make an incision in your body to open up the abnormal connection between the two organs. This could potentially cause some complications following the surgery, including bowel incontinence (if the anus or rectum is involved), abscess or recurrence of the fistula.
VAAFT (VIDEO ASSISTED ANAL FISTULA TREATMENT)
This technique is minimally invasive and sphincter-saving technique for treating complex fistulas. A video telescope allows surgeons to see inside the fistula tract.
LIFT (LIGATION OF INTERSPINCTERIC FISTULA TRACT)
LIFT procedure is usually for Complex fistulas. Firstly, a seton is kept in the fistula tract, forcing it to widen over time. So after a few weeks, the surgeon removes the infected tissue and closes the internal fistula opening.
The advantage of LIFT procedure is that the fistula access between the sphincter muscles thus avoiding cutting them.
FILAC (FISTULA-TRACT LASER CLOSURE)
FiLac technique uses the Leonardo Laser. Because the aim of the procedure is to gently remove the fistula tract without damaging the sphincter muscle. So the patient takes general anesthesia and requires about 30-40 minute to finish the procedure
Visit bottom’s up clinic in Bangalore for treatment and management of anal fistula. Bottom’s up clinic is one stop for treatment of anal fistulas and their management. A wide range of fistula ayurvedic treatment in bangalore and safe surgical procedures are used to treat anal fistulas. At Bottom’s Up Clinic we use advanced techniques to help ensure that there is no recurrence and patient goes home happy.
FAQs of Anal fistula
It is a tunnel like abnormal connection between your anal canal to the surrounding skin. This is caused to the result of abscess formation which is secondary to any injury or infection in the anal a canal.
Most fistulas are caused by simple hair follicle infection which was not treated completely/properly.
There is an abundance of hair follicles on the body. Some of them are found in the anal canal and if any one of them around anal canal gets infected an abscess can form which may turn into fistula.
Infection is most common in people who sit for a very long amount of time. People who sit in unhygienic or hot/sweating environment are at a significantly higher risk. When infection happens, there is pus collection and abscess formation. If the abscess is drained properly then chances of fistula formation decreases drastically.
However if this pus is not drained properly then the body has to discharge the pus. There are only two ways of this happening on its own.
- One, If it bursts out of skin and the infection gets completely cured. If this happens then fistula does not form.
- Two, If it bursts into anal canal. If this happens then fistula is formed.
- Other worst case scenario is if it bursts into skin but residual infection spreads slowly in different directions. If this happens then a complex fistula is formed.
Yes, fistulas can be of different types and they are classified depending on the involvement of sphincter muscles and internal opening. Visit best clinic in Bangalore, Bottom’s up clinic for effective treatment of each type of anal fistulas.
Pain, discomfort, swelling, discharge, soreness, redness, fever and bleeding are some common symptoms. There can also be fecal incontinence. Patient can feel a feeling of fullness even after passing stools and can lose their ability to control passing of stools. There can also be mucoid discharge from the anus.
There is recurrent discharge of pus around the anal area which stops and starts. This collection of pus can turn into an abscess which can form into a fistula.
Only way to cure the fistula is by surgery. Most of fistula are simple and do not involve sphincter muscles so cutting it out fully will cure the fistula. If fistula involves sphincter muscles then cutting out fistula in one operation is not solution as it might cure fistula but it will one with incontinence. If sphincters are damaged one would loose control over the passing the stool and might have to run to toilet every time one gets sensation or there is prospect of passing on its own. So in these scenarios patient will need to have patience and might need two/three operations.
Fistulotomy is a common surgical procedure that is done for management of anal fistula. In this surgical process, the skin and the muscles over the infected tunnel are cut open. This allows healing of the anal fistula from inside out.
Why choose Bottom's Up Clinic?
At Bottom’s Up Clinics – we do a combination of the world’s best treatment options to give you the best results. We frequently employ of combination Laser Therapy with LIFT technique which is the best result oriented therapy so far and with the least amount of recurrence. Also since these are minimally invasive techniques, there is absolutely no chance of sphincter/valve damage leading to loss of bowel control.
Visit bottom’s up clinic in Bangalore for treatment and management of anal fistula. Bottom’s up clinic is one stop treatment for anal fistulas in Bangalore.
A wide range of ayurvedic and safe surgical procedures are used to treat anal fistulas. Our team of best nutritionists will ensure that you follow the right diet during and after the treatment.
At Bottom’s Up Clinic we use advanced techniques to help ensure that there is no recurrence and patient goes home happy.