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Colorectal Diseases

Colovesical fistula

10/23/2008

Question:

I was told I had a colovesical fistula and would need surgery, however, now I have not passed air upon urination for over a month now, bowel movements are fine and the urinalysis two weeks ago showed no bacteria. My question is is it possible to have this spontaneously close and if so, is surgery still necessary? What happens if no surgery?

Answer:

It depends on the cause of your fistula. If it was due to Crohn's disease, it can heal with medial therapy. If it was due to diverticulitis, healing is not common, but is possible. If a diverticular fistula heals, it is at high risk of recurring. If the fistula was due to radiation or cancer, healing is not going to occur without surgery. Ask your doctor to re-evaluate your abdominal exam, general health, and maybe even a CT scan to see if you are well-healed, or not.

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Response by:

Janice Frederick Rafferty, MD Janice Frederick Rafferty, MD
Professor of Surgery
Chief of Colorectal Surgery Division
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati