Colovesical fistula means there’s an abnormal tunnel between the colon and bladder, serving as a pathway for fecal matter to enter the bladder. Surgery is the primary treatment for a colovesical fistula and is performed by the experts at Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, in Somerville, New Jersey. To schedule a consultation to discuss surgical options for a colovesical fistula, call the office or book online today.

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What is a colovesical fistula?

A colovesical fistula is an open tunnel that connects the colon to the bladder. Normally, there’s a thick wall of tissue that separates these two organs. When you have a colovesical fistula, there’s an opening that allows fecal matter from the colon to travel to the bladder, causing serious infections.

Colovesical fistula is a rare condition but treatable.

What causes a colovesical fistula?

Complications related to diverticulitis are the most common cause of a colovesical fistula. Diverticulitis is inflammation of the diverticula, small pouches that form along the wall of the colon.

When you have diverticula, you have diverticulosis, a common condition of the colon that rarely causes problems. Diverticulitis is an acute condition that occurs when the pouches become inflamed and infected, requiring immediate medical intervention.

Certain types of colon cancer may also cause a colovesical fistula such as adenocarcinoma of the colon (cancer that starts in the mucus-producing glands). People with a long history of Crohn’s disease, a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), are also at risk of developing this condition.

The abnormal connection may also develop following surgery, abdominal trauma, or radiation to the lower abdominal area for cancer treatment.

What are the symptoms of colovesical fistula?

Most people with a colovesical fistula experience changes in the look of their urine. The urine may look brown, cloudy, or pink. You may also see bubbles in your urine.

You may also have pain during urination or see blood. Abdominal pain, diarrhea, and recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs) are also symptoms of colovesical fistulas.

What happens during surgery for a colovesical fistula?

Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, customizes your colovesical fistula surgical plan based on your symptoms and medical history. During surgery, they repair or remove the connection using laparoscopic, robotic, or open surgical techniques.

For the procedure, your surgeon makes an incision, disconnects the colon and bladder, and removes the diseased portion of your colon (colon resection). They suture closed the hole in the bladder and repair any other problems involving the bladder or colon.

Your surgeon then places a patch between the colon and bladder to prevent future colovesical fistulas.

Most people resume their normal activities a couple of weeks following colovesical fistula surgery.

To find out more about colovesical fistula surgery from the experts at Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, call or schedule an appointment online today.