WHAT IS AN ANAL FISTULA?
An anal fistula is a side track from the anal canal on to the skin of the peri-anal area or buttocks. Through this side track and its external opening, pus or blood keeps on discharging intermittently or continuously.
WHAT CAUSES IT?
At the junction of anal canal and large intestine, there are anal glands which open into the anal canal. Sometimes, they get blocked or clogged. When that happens, a bacteria buildup is created and this causes a boil or an abscess in the area around anal canal. When this abscess opens or bursts on to the skin, a side track is formed, which refuses to heal. This is how a fistula is formed.
In rare cases, fistula can also occur due to diseases like T.B., cancer, inflammatory bowel diseases and sexually transmitted diseases.
WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF AN ANAL FISTULA?
Usually a typical fistula patient experiences a small boil near the anal area which discharges pus or blood. It may heal by itself only to recur. This cycle of boil formation and pus discharge goes on repeating sometimes leading to formation of a persistent hole which discharges pus, blood or sticky mucus continuously. Check with your doctor, if you suffer from any of these symptoms:
- Recurrent anal abscesses.
- Pain and swelling around the anus.
- Bloody or foul-smelling drainage (pus) from an opening around the anus. The pain may decrease after the fistula drains.
- Irritation of the skin around the anus due to persistent drainage.
- Fever, chills, and a general feeling of fatigue in some cases.
HOW IS A FISTULA DIAGNOSED?
Proctocare Clinic is well equipped for diagnosis of fistula. The doctor after careful enquiry into your complaints will examine you externally and digitally. A video Proctoscopic examination will also be carried out during your visit in O.P.D. An M.R. Fistulogram may be advised to know the internal structure (path) of the fistula.
HOW IS FISTULA TREATED?
Fistulas are notorious to recur after treatment or surgery. Hence, various doctors have suggested multiple treatment options. They range from traditional surgery (fistulotomy or fistulectomy), ksharsutra (ayurvedic method) to Fistula plugs and LASER SURGERY(FILAC)
Proctocare Clinic is one of the few pioneering centers in the country where a large number of patients have undergone the painless LASER surgery for fistula and are very satisfied with the results. The recurrence rate at this clinic is also very low.