I am Dr. Vijay Arora, General Surgeon. I am taking this opportunity to talk about a common surgical problem suffered by a lot of people called fistula. You may have heard about this disease. Commonly known as fistula anal. A fistula is opening outside the skin and with one of the body lining. It usually leads to urine, stools or any other fluid. When it leads to stool then it is an intestinal fistula. And if it is connected to the lower rectum then it is fistula in anal. Fistula is the collection of pus. Which happens in the patient to cause constipation in a lot of patients. Painful passage of stools, sometimes bleeding. Many people think that it is piles and ignores it. Many people go to the doctor for getting the treatment. Do get relief from it also. It can lead to continuous pus or stools. Fistula is something which requires surgery for its cure.
This surgery can be done in many ways. Everyone is interested in getting the surgery in one go. And now laser is demanded by the patient. Laser surgery is something which has been advertised a lot for various problems. What I would like to tell you is to get the correct surgery. And don't ask for the most exotic or quick surgery. The laser is something which requires no cuts to be made. But the fistula is something which has an opening inside If the inner opening is not closed, any amount of laser, cleaning of the fistula will not heal it. Very often fistula can heal itself. It can also be that there are periods of a few months or sometimes year or so while the fistula is not draining. So, you think you have already healed with any medication you have taken. The fistula may also be a very complexed disorder which means it is connected to more than one organ. Or it is coming through an area where the muscle is controlling the opening is present. If it is passing through the muscle, cutting the fistula may result in loss of control of the anal sphincter. So, we have to cut it in staging. There are various methods of cutting like half, 1/3 and then complete.
That will not result in loss of control of stool. You must get to the specialist surgeon of fistula and do not be dishearten when he says it requires 2 stages or 3 stages to be done. Every person doing one surgery will always result in failure. So, you must persist in the treatment of fistula and get it treated until it heals completely. Do not be disheartened by the time taken or the amount of dressing that has been made, change in diet or maybe the medication that needs to be done. Till it heals, you should be under the care of the operator. It is also important to realize that some fistulas are because of some infections which require specific treatment. If it is a TB fistula, no amount of surgery is going to work. So, insist on and your surgeon will definitely do a biopsy. It will tell you the exact disease and the treatment. Do not leave the fistula for long. It can have complications.