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Fecal Diversion in Perirectal Fistulizing Crohn's Disease is an Underutilized and Potentially Temporary Means of Successful Treatment

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The purpose of this study was to determine the outcome of patients treated with fecal diversion for perirectal fistulizing Crohn's disease. Thirty-nine patients were identified and followed for an average of 60 months. Patients were divided into two groups based on surgical treatment: local surgical treatment only and fecal diversion in addition to local surgical therapy. Thirteen patients (33%) underwent fecal diversion due to the severity of their disease. Eleven of these patients (85%) had complete resolution of their fistulas and only two (15%) required proctectomy. In contrast, only five out of 26 patients (19%) who underwent local surgical procedures alone had complete perirectal disease resolution. Intestinal continuity was restored in six patients (46%) and three of these patients (50%) remained disease free. The remaining three patients had disease recurrence, which required additional local procedures in one patient (17%), but with eventual resolution; the other two patients (33%) necessitated rediversion. Our data suggest that fecal diversion is a viable treatment option for severe perirectal fistulizing Crohn's disease and may be associated with a higher rate of resolution than local surgical treatment alone. In addition, we demonstrate a higher rate of successful intestinal continuity restoration than is typically reported.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: From the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida

Publication date: August 1, 2009

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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