Types, Signs, Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment of Anal Fistula
Abnormal connection between the skin near anus & lining on the inside of anal canal is known as anal fistula. Majority of anal fistulas are caused by abscesses that develop in the anal canal. As a result pus can drain onto the skin of its own or through an operation. Anal fistulas happen when the tract made by pus to the skin stays open.
Types of Anal Fistula
There are four types of anal fistulas.
- Blind Fistula – This type of anal fistula is open only at one end but connects two structures.
- Complete Fistula – This anal fistula has both, an internal & external opening.
- Horseshoe Fistula – This type of anal fistula connects anal canal to surface of skin near anus after going around the rectum.
- Incomplete Fistula – This anal fistula has a tube which starts from skin which is closed on the inside but fails to connect with any internal structure.
Signs & Symptoms of Anal Fistula
Swelling near or around anus
- Tenderness, redness & skin irritation near or around anus
- Anal pain & swelling
- Discharge of blood or pus from the fistula opening
- Fever due to pus & infection
- Painful bowel movement & constipation
Diagnosing Anal Fistula
Doctors usually perform a digital rectal examination which is sufficient to diagnose anal fistula. However some patients may require additional tests to screen for the following.
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- Sexual Infections
- Rectal Cancer
- Diverticular Diseases
For screening purposes, doctors may perform tests like MRI, Ultrasound or a CT scan.
Surgery for Anal Fistula
Surgery is typically required since most anal fistulas do not heal on their own or with medicine. Surgery for anal fistula is normally performed under general anesthesia. It takes about 30 minutes of time to complete surgery for anal fistula. Moreover, in order to lessen the risk of bowel incontinence treatment of anal fistula may involve many operations over a period of time. General complications following surgery for anal fistula include pain, bleeding & unsightly-scarring. Specific complications following anal fistula surgery include difficulty in passing urine, bowel incontinence & involuntary passing of wind or loose feces. The wound following surgery may take several weeks of time to heal completely & you may need to wear a pad until then.
Laser Treatment for Anal Fistula
While there are numerous complications associated with surgery, laser treatment for anal fistula at Laser Piles Clinic in Hyderabad is a nonsurgical procedure following which you can go back home the same day. This is the most advanced treatment which is FDA approved. There is no need for dressing after the operation. With no diet restrictions or any need of bed rest following laser treatment, this is the best way to treat anal fistula.