Surgery for intestinal fistulas

This is a large and arduous surgery for a serious disease. Management is complicated, and patients often remain in the hospital for a long time.

Indications

Benign fistulas to skin and other organs, caused by Crohn's disease, other inflammatory conditions, trauma, and iatrogenic causes.

Treatment

Treatment involves identification of the fistula, skin care, bandaging, management of a possible stoma, correction of fluid balance and nutrition, venous access; later, there is radiologic and endoscopic evaluation of the fistulas and gut, and at the optimal timepoint, often 6 months after the emergence, a laparotomy and surgical correction. The surgery is difficult, time consuming, and sometimes complicated, but it has a good chance of curing a very difficult problem for the patient.

Routines

Often a long hospital stay is required, with intensive collaboration between all categories of personnel. Much knowledge is necessary. Some care can be carried out at home with advanced nursing including nutrition.

Follow-up

Individualized outpatient follow-up is continued until healing is complete and nutrition is stable.

Diagnostic methods

CAT scan of the abdomen, various radiologic contrast examinations, and endoscopies of the gastrointestinal tract.

Fistulography 


Page revised Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Content manager: Magnus Andersson

Published by Anita Pettersson

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Consultant

Magnus Andersson

 

Colorectal nurses

Marianne Frisk

Lena Hansson

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