Anal Fistula: Symptoms and Management
Anal Fistula Surgery in Chandigarh – Anal fistula is a small connection, which is established between the lumen of the rectum and the external opening lies on perianal skin. There is pus discharge through the passage. It can present in many ways.
Anal Fistula Symptoms
- Pain and swelling around the area
- Frequent abscesses
- Bloody or foul-smelling drainage (pus) from an opening around that area.
- Irritation of the skin around the perianal area.
- Pain with bowel movements
- Fever, chills and a feeling of fatigue
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Anal Fistula Treatment and Management
Surgery is almost always necessary to cure a fistula. The surgery is performed by a colorectal surgeon. The goal of the surgery is a fine balance between getting rid of the fistula while protecting the sphincter muscles, which could result in incontinence if damaged. Fistulas in which there is no or little sphincter muscle involved are treated with a fistulotomy. In this procedure, the skin and muscle over the tunnel are cut open to convert it to an open groove. Hence the wound heal from inside.
Anal Fistula Seton Surgery
In the case of a more complex fistula, a special drain called a seton is placed, which remains in place for at least 6 weeks. Once a seton is placed, a second operation is almost always performed. Complex fistulae may require multiple surgeries at variable intervals.
Most of the fistulas respond well to surgery. But the healing process takes time. At times, fistula are associated with lot of pus in the form of abscess. Then too staged surgery is performed. At time draining setons are used to drain the pus.
The type of surgery and number of surgeries required will depend on the complexity of the disease. Clinical examination is the key to making these decisions. MRI fistulogram is almost always required to assist in making plans for the surgery,
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This disease is associated with lot of morbidity and needs plenty of patience, as it is in a dirty area of the body, which has to function daily. However, correctly treated, patients do very well. Aim is to make sure that in first instance infection is controlled, which reduces pain before proceeding for definitive surgery.
Almost always, the surgery needs one night admission and subsequently patients can join work within a week of surgery. Dressing the surgical site is simple and patient can be followed up in the out patients department once a week or once in a fortnight.