What is an anal fistula?
An anal fistula is a small tunnel with an opening on the skin around the anus that connects to an infected gland inside the anus. Pain and swelling around the anus are the two most commonly seen symptoms. Non-surgical treatment options for fistula are also discussed in this article.
Anal fistula are small channels which are found to develop between end of bowel & skin near anus. Many a time anal fistula cause bleeding & fecal discharge while passing stools. This can often also be a painful experience. Sometimes anal fistula are found to occur after surgery for draining anal abscess. While persistent drainage is experienced by some patients suffering from anal fistula, while in others where outside of the channel opening has closed experience recurrent anal abscesses. Surgery, until now was the only type of cure for anal fistulas.
An anal fistula, from the outside, looks like an opening on the skin around the anus. This opening, in fact, is a tunnel that connects an infected cavity inside the anus.
There are small glands inside the anus that make mucus for smooth excretion process. At times, these glands could get clogged resulting in an infection. Such infections could lead to an abscess, which could further develop into an anal fistula.
What are the symptoms of anal fistula?
If you are experiencing one or more symptoms of anal fistula, we recommend you to consult a doctor. Most common signs & symptoms of anal fistula include the following.
- Pain around the anus
- Swelling around the anus
- Frequent anal sores
- Small opening around the anus
- Bleeding and foul smell from this opening
- Painful bowel movements
- Bleeding during bowel movements
- Irritation around anus
- Feeling fatigued, feverish and chills
- Constipation or pain that is associated with bowel movement
- Constant throbbing pain at anus which is worse while sitting down
- Discharge of pus or blood
- Skin irritation around anus, including tenderness, redness & swelling
What are the Causes of Anal Fistula?
Anal sores and anal glands are the major causes of anal fistula. Some of the other less common causes of an anal fistula are;
- Sexually transmitted
- Crohn’s disease (inflammatory intestinal disease)
- Diverticulitis (Another inflammatory intestinal disease)
- Due to surgical complication near the anus
- Due to an ongoing illness that affects bowels
What are the Diagnoses for Anal Fistula?
The most common way of anal fissure diagnosis is by examining the skin around the anus. This examination is done to check for an opening around anus, depth and direction of the tract and drainage from the opening.
In some cases, the fistula might not be visible on the surface of the skin. For such cases, the doctor might perform one or more of the following tests:
- Anoscopy – Examining the anal canal using a small instrument
- Fistula probe – An instrument inserted through the fistula
- Fistulography – X-raying after injecting a contrast solution into the fistula
- MRI – Magnetic Resonance Imaging
- Injecting diluted methylene blue dye into the fistula
- Apart from all this, the doctor might conduct some further tests or colonoscopy to diagnose any related conditions such as the Crohn’s disease.
Why Choose Non-Surgical Treatment Over Surgery?
The risk of the sphincter muscles getting damaged is the major reason why people choose non-surgical treatment for fistula over surgery. If the sphincter muscle is damaged, it could cause incontinence, which means you could lose control of your bowel movement!
What are the Non-Surgical Treatments for Anal Fistula?
Laser treatment for fistula: Fistula laser closure is a unique sphincter-saving non-surgical treatment for anal fistula. In this procedure, the affected tissues are shrunk using laser beams, resulting in the closure of the tract.
Laser treatment for anal fistula is relatively simple, safe and minimally invasive with higher chances of success in contrast to surgery.
Soon After Surgery for Fistula
Most people are prescribed medications following surgery for pain relief. However, antibiotics are usually not required for healthy people undergoing surgery for fistula. But for people with diabetes & decreased immunity antibiotics are most essential. Nevertheless, most patients undergoing surgery for fistula are able to move around, eat & drink soon as effects of anesthesia have worn-off. A longer stay at the hospital may be required in case the surgery was complicated or the patient may be able to go back home the same day. Wounds following surgery usually take about six weeks of time to heal. Patients are also recommended to take stool softeners in order to ease discomfort of bowel movements. Quite a few patients are also advised to wear gauze pads so as to prevent drainage from soiling clothes.
Most Common Complications Following Surgery for Fistula
Patients experiencing the following complications after surgery for fistula should seek immediate medical help.
- Heavy bleeding
- Increased discharge, swelling or pain
- Difficulty in passing urine
- High temperature (38C or 100.4F or more)
- Troublesome scarring
Most Advanced Non-Surgical Laser Treatment for Fistula
Fistula laser closure is a novel sphincter-saving treatment for anal fistula. Primary closure of track in this procedure is achieved with help of laser energy. During operation, laser energy causes shrinkage of tissue with the aim of closing the track. Laser treatment for anal fistula is relatively simple, safe, minimally invasive & with high chances of success.
Benefits of Laser Treatment for Fistulas
Laser treatment is the latest in medical technology which is very effective in curing fistula. It involves no cutting, bleeding or require any kind of dressing following treatment. Laser treatment for fistula is less painful & much safer in comparison to surgical intervention. It is a quick outpatient procedure & just requires a couple of hours to complete.
Why Laser Piles Clinic is the Best Treatment Facility for Piles?
Laser Piles Clinic is one of the best treatment facilities in the twin cities of Hyderabad & Secunderabad. With 5 state-of-the-art branches equipped with the latest medical technology, patients can go for the one which is closest to them. Focused on providing high-quality of laser treatment for fistulas at the most affordable prices, this procedure is safe & quick & performed by highly-trained doctors. Laser Piles Clinics also have lady doctors to serve female patients.
Fistula treatment without surgery in Hyderabad is at its best at Laser Piles Clinic. You can avail the most advanced laser treatments at any of our eight branches in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
We are focused on providing fast and reliable treatment for you, with our highly skilled set of doctors and advanced equipment. The lady patients at Laser Piles Clinic are attended by female doctors for your convenience.
If you have observed one or more of the signs/symptoms of anal fistula in you, we recommend visiting your nearest Laser Piles Clinic to get it checked by a doctor.
Book an appointment @ Laser Piles Clinic
Call us @ 910 850 3674
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Never wait till it gets complicated, act now!