Gastrointestinal fistulation

Last revised by Yuranga Weerakkody on 8 May 2023

A gastrointestinal fistula (plural: fistulae or fistulas) is an abnormal connection or fistula, between the gut and another epithelial-/endothelial-lined surface, such as another organ system, the skin surface, or elsewhere along the gastrointestinal tract. Some authors exclude fistulas involving the large bowel and esophagus when classifying or describing gastrointestinal fistulas.

The formation of a fistula may be referred to as fistulation or fistulisation, both terms are equally valid 8.

Gastrointestinal fistulas can be congenital or acquired in nature. They are generally named according to their participating anatomic components, and virtually every imaginable combination has been reported. Examples include

Their causes can be as diverse as their types and include 2

Fistula is the Latin word for pipe 9.

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