World’s biggest fistula successfully treated at Delhi hospital

New Delhi, Feb 23 (IANS) A 36-year old patient suffering from a 25-cm fistula, claimed to be the world’s longest, has been successfully treated, the city-based hospital where treatment was performed said on Tuesday.

The patient, Siraj Ahmed, suffered from a rare kind of fistula, with two internal openings and one external opening, which had reached into his scrotum up to the root of his penis.

Fistula is an abnormal connection between two hollow spaces (technically, two epithelialised surfaces), such as blood vessels, intestines, or other hollow organs. Fistulas are usually caused by injury or surgery, but they can also result from an infection or inflammation.

According to the medical sciences, the average size of the fistula is about 3 to 5 cm.

Ahmed’s fistula was causing pus and blood discharge through opening in scrotum near base of penis, said Ashish Bhanot, senior surgeon consultant at Apollo Spectra hospital where the patient was treated.

Looking at the complications involved in the surgery, the doctor thought of performing a new technique named Video Assisted Anal Fistula Treatment (VAAFT). The technique helps patients to undergo the surgical procedure painlessly, with an assurance of fast recovery and lower chances of recurrence.

“The surgery too was challenging not only because of its size but also involvement of anal control muscles with fistula,” said Ashish Bhanot, the doctor.

Explaining the treatment procedure, Bhanot said: “VAAFT gives no problem in bowel movement after the procedure. The treatment requires no big incisions, wounds making the process friendly and helps the patient to restart a normal life easily.”

“Rapid and complete healing of the wound occurs within a few days to weeks as compared to open surgery where it takes a few months to heal. Thus the suffering of the patient is minimised.”

Siraj Ahmed said: “I was relieved of the pain and was able to sit and walk same day. I was able to travel back to my native place in a 36-hour train journey the very next day. Now there is no pain, discharge, bleeding or any discomfort and fistula has healed completely.”

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