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What is an anal fistula?

An anal fistula is a small tunnel that connects an infected gland in and around the anus to the skin around the anus. An anal fistula can cause swelling and pain around the anal area. Anal fistulas are infected cavities that become filled with debris and pus. Globally, 90% of anal fistulas result due to acute anal infections. 

Overview

TAGS

  • Risks
  • Why Painless Treatment?
  • Don’t Delay Laser Treatment
  • Why Pristyn Care?
  • Hassle-free Insurance Approval

Risks

 

Infection

 

Perforation

 

Sepsis or organ death

 

Incontinence

 

Fistula Recurrence

Causes

Long-standing abscess

Underlying Medical conditions

Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Tuberculosis

Trauma

Symptoms

Bleeding

Skin Maceration

Perianal swelling

Pus or blood discharge

Pain during bowel movements/urination

Treatment

Diagnosis:

Doctors usually diagnose an anal fistula by examining the area around the anus. To determine the depth and direction of the fistula tract doctor can produce drainage from the external opening. If the fistula is not visible on the skin surface, additional tests like Anoscopy is used. To better define the fistula, the doctor may order an MRI or Ultrasound as well.

Surgery:

Usually, several fistula surgical techniques or options are used to treat anal fistulas. A few of them are seton placement, closure of fistula with a medical plug, drainage of infection from the fistula, opening up the fistula to heal on its own, and laser technique. At Pristyn Care, anal fistula doctors prefer to perform the fistula laser treatment because of its benefits like:

  • Cost-effective
  • No cuts or incision
  • No risk of infection during and after the surgery
  • Less chance for recurrence of anal fistula
  • Patients can resume normal activities within 24 hours
  • Quick recovery from the treatment

Anal fistula operation with the help of laser technique involves the insertion of the radiation-emitting probe into the anal area where the fistula is developed. Then, the radiation from the probe is emitted directly to the fistula to destroy its epithelium and obliterates the rest of the fistula channel/tract.

Why Pristyn Care ?

Pristyn Care is COVID-19 safe

Pristyn Care is COVID-19 safe

Your safety is taken care of by thermal screening, social distancing, sanitized clinics and hospital rooms, sterilized surgical equipment and mandatory PPE kits during surgery.

Assisted Surgery Experience

Assisted Surgery Experience

A dedicated Medical Coordinator assists you throughout the surgery journey from insurance paperwork, to free commute from home to hospital & back and admission-discharge process at the hospital.

Medical Expertise With Technology

Medical Expertise With Technology

Our surgeons spend a lot of time with you to diagnose your condition. You are assisted in all pre-surgery medical diagnostics. We offer advanced laser and laparoscopic surgical treatment. Our procedures are USFDA approved.

Post Surgery Care

Post Surgery Care

We offer free follow-up consultations and instructions including dietary tips as well as exercises to every patient to ensure they have a smooth recovery to their daily routines.

Pristyn Care in Numbers

60K+Happy Patients
100+Clinics
30+Cities
20K+Surgeries
300+Doctors
400+Hospitals

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I know that I have a fistula?

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What is the difference between anal fistula and piles?

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What is the difference between fistula disease and fissure?

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What will happen if a fistula is left untreated?

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What are the qualifications of anal fistula doctors?

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How long does it take to complete anal fistula surgery?

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How long it takes to recover from fistula surgery?

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What is the success rate of fistula surgery?

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What are tests used to diagnose anal fistula?

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Quick Facts on Fistula

  • If not treated properly, an anal fistula may potentially cause bowel incontinence
  • In complicated vaginal deliveries, an obstetric fistula may develop between the rectum and the vaginal cavity
  • People younger than 40 years of age have higher risks of developing anal fistula

Home remedies for anal fistula

Following are some of the ways to manage fistula at home:

  • Eat a high-fibre diet and drink plenty of water.
  • Soak the anal area for 15-20 minutes 3-4 times a day.
  • Wear a pad over the anal area to prevent the spillage of pus drainage.
  • Use a stool softener.
  • Resume physical activities only when the doctor recommends.

How to prepare for anal fistula surgery?

The surgeon usually guides the patient on how to prepare for anal fistula surgery. If the patient smokes or consumes alcohol regularly, the surgeon may ask him or her to stop those immediately. 

The anal fistula surgery might be done under the influence of local or general anesthesia. The effects of the anesthesia need a few hours to wear off, and as such, it is recommended for the patient to bring someone who can accompany the patient during the hospital stay or while driving back home.

On the day of the surgery, the vitals of the patient will be checked to confirm if the surgery can be proceeded with or not. 

What happens during and after laser fistula surgery?

In laser fistula surgery, the surgeon introduces laser heat into the fistula which passes through the opening of the rectum. Once the laser is activated, it causes the fistula tissues to shrink down. The surgeon slowly draws back the laser through the fistula, sealing the channel behind it. The surgeon then closes the internal opening either with a suture or a skin flap.

After laser surgery for anal fistula, the patient is kept under observation for a few hours. During this healing process, the doctor monitors the vitals of the patient's body. The patient is discharged in less than 48 hours. 

The patient can anticipate feeling some discomfort for a week after the surgery. Over-the-counter pain killers can be taken for relief. Additionally, warm baths can also be taken to dry the affected area carefully afterwards. The recovery process after laser fistula surgery is generally hassle-free and causes no complications. However, it is highly advised for the patient to follow the suggestions of the doctor until complete recovery.

Which treatment is the best for anal fistula?

Anal fistula is one of the common colorectal diseases in which an abnormal tract grows to connect the anorectal mucosal tissue with the exterior anal skin. There are different types of treatment methods for anal fistula, viz, fistulectomy, laser anal fistula surgery, and Before concluding which surgery is the best one for you, let's help you understand these treatment options for anal fistula.

1. Fistulectomy

In this surgical process for anal fistula, the surgeon drains and eliminates the fistula tract under the influence of anesthesia. Once the tract is completely drained, the surgeon seals the opening and allows the tract to heal. This process is recommended only in the case of complex anal fistulas. Fistulectomy has the risk of damaging the sphincter muscles and causing faecal incontinence in the patient.

2. Laser fistula surgery

Laser fistula surgery is considered to be the most advanced and safest treatment for anal fistula. The process is carried out under the influence of anesthesia and is completed within 30-40 minutes. In this process, a laser probe is inserted into the fistula tract which damages the tract and allows it to shrink. The treatment is considered much more effective than conventional methods of surgery since there are no incisions and wounds involved in the process.

3. Ksharsutra

This is the ancient ayurvedic technique of treating anal fistula. In this process, a thread that is alkaline in nature is tied inside the fistula. The thread irritates the tract and causes it to inflame. This is a non-invasive treatment that also helps in getting rid of the dirt, pus and debris from the fistula tract. However, in most cases, the treatment does not show effective results in the first session and hence the patient needs to undergo multiple sessions to treat the fistula. There is also a scope of recurrence in this process of anal fistula treatment.

Medical practitioners consider laser surgery as the best treatment for anal fistula. The positive sides that make this process the best treatment among all are:

  • Short surgical process
  • Can be performed as a daycare process
  • The surgical site heals faster than conventional surgeries
  • Painless process
  • No recurrence
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